There’s no denying we all felt it – last year was an absolute scorcher.

Here are the events and facts that lead to Australia’s hottest & driest year to date.


  • 2019 was Australia’s warmest and driest year on record, with temperatures 1.52degC above the average.
  • The previous driest year was in 1902, and the hottest in 2013, when temperatures were 1.33degC above the average, compared to 1.52 degC above average last year.
  • There were heatwaves in January and December, with high temperatures recorded across much of the country.
  • It was also the warmest year on record for NSW and Western Australia; and one of the top 10 warmest for Queensland, Victoria, South Australia and the Northern Territory.
  • It brought the highest mean maximum temperatures on record for Brisbane, Canberra, Hobart and Sydney.
  • Much of the country was affected by drought.

(Steve Parsons/PA Wire)


  • Severe tropical cyclone Veronica caused major flooding in the Pilbara region in northern Western Australia in March.
  • A significant lack of rainfall across WA’s southwest.
  • Darwin had a late monsoon for both the 2018-2019 and 2019-2020 seasons.
  • Unusually late tropical cyclones hit in May, with Lili in the Top End and Ann in Queensland.
  • Queensland’s Gulf Country, Townsville and large parts of the state’s west flooded from January to April, killing of hundreds of thousands of livestock.
  • The southeast corner of Queensland was hit by severe storms in November and early December.
  • Bushfires stretched from southern Queensland to eastern NSW from September, in what was the beginning of a horrific fire season.
  • NSW was affected by severe storms in late November.
  • Further south, bushfires raged in Gippsland and northeast Victoria from summer to autumn, and from spring through December and into the new year.
  • Rainfall in the Gippsland region was severely low, and parts of the inland southeast felt their coolest mean minimum temperatures on record in August.
  • Bushfires tore through remote bushland across Tasmania from summer to autumn.
  • In South Australia, the lowest rainfall on record was recorded between July and December, however Lake Eyre/Kati Thanda received its most significant filling since 2010/11.


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