Monday, May 16, 2011

Drought Breaking Rains forecast for WA.....?


Dry and warmer conditions continue to persist into another week for many WA grain growers, so when will the previous sixteen months of record dry conditions come to an end? A report released by World Weather Inc, anticipates that current changes in the atmosphere will support the notion that Huey will soon be sending it down!

Warm ocean temperatures over the eastern Indian Ocean will soon contribute a steady influx of tropical moisture into Western and South Australia to help induce better rainfall potential. This pooling of warmer than usual water in the eastern Indian Ocean is part of the Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) circulation that has a big influence over Australia. This negative phase of IOD usually helps to bring greater than usual amounts of moisture to the western and central sections of Australia so that when cool fronts move from west to east through the region they are enhanced with moisture that is then dragged into other parts of the country.

The negative phase of IOD is already beginning to evolve, but rainfall has not been falling because of a couple of other factors. First the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) had been strongly positive for an extended period of time and this has favoured rainfall in eastern Australia and tended to downplay rain events in the west. Another reason for recent suppressed rainfall in WA has been the recent development of the negative phase of Madden Julian Oscillation (MJO).

However World Weather Inc believe that both of these features are expected to weaken and/or diminish in the next seven to ten days. As these features change and move out of the region, a wet weather bias is likely to emerge. This is in contrast to the latest SOI report released by Australian Bureau of, which predicted a weakly positive IOD to develop over the coming months.

World Weather is so certain that the drought will soon break, they have warned about potentially planting delays attributed to wet paddocks! They are so bullish they believe these changes will arrive sooner rather then later! Whilst short term rainfall forecasts show some light rains scattered across the wheat belt, wide spread soaking rains are still missing.

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