Weekly update - 2 August 2018

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Weekly Australian Climate,
Water and Agricultural Update

Key issues

  • During the week ending 1 August 2018 rainfall was restricted to the south-west and parts of southern and eastern Australia. Rainfall totals of between 10 and 50 millimetres were recorded across isolated regions of southern and north-eastern New South Wales, south-eastern Queensland, southern and eastern Victoria, south-western Western Australia, Tasmania, and scattered areas of southern South Australia.
  • In cropping regions, weekly rainfall totals of between 1 and 5 millimetres were recorded in parts of New South Wales and Queensland. For cropping regions in Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia, weekly rainfall totals were variable, ranging from 0 to 25 millimetres in Victoria and South Australia, and 1 to 50 millimetres in Western Australia
  • July 2018 was Australia’s fifth warmest July on record for the country as a whole; the national monthly mean temperature was 1.24 °C above average. The mean monthly maximum temperature for Australia as a whole was the second warmest on record at 2.22 °C above average.
  • Rainfall in July 2018 was generally below average for Australia as a whole. Severely deficient to extremely low rainfall was recorded across much of New South Wales, with the state as a whole recording its fifth-driest July on record, and the driest July since 2002.
  • Relative lower layer soil moisture in July 2018 was extremely low to well below average across most of New South Wales, parts of eastern Victoria, southern and central Queensland, parts of northern and southern South Australia, the Northern Territory and large areas of northern and southern Western Australia.
  • During the next eight days, rainfall is expected across most of the southern half of mainland Australia, and Tasmania. Little to no rainfall is forecast across the remainder of the country.
  • In cropping regions, rainfall totals of between 1 and 5 millimetres are forecast for Queensland. Rainfall totals of between 1 and 15 millimetres are forecast for New South Wales. Higher totals of between 5 and 50 millimetres are expected for cropping regions in Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia during the next eight days
  • Water storage levels in the Murray–Darling Basin (MDB) increased during the week ending 2 August 2018 by 79 gigalitres (GL) to 11,907 GL and are at 53 per cent of total capacity. This is 17 percentage points or 3,799 GL less than at the same time last year.
  • Allocation prices in the southern Murray-Darling Basin increased in the week ending 2 August 2018 to $269 per ML. This is an increase of $26 from the same time last week.

Climate

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Rainfall this week

During the week ending 1 August 2018 little to no rainfall was recorded across much of mainland Australia, with falls restricted to the south-west and parts of southern and eastern Australia. Rainfall totals of between 10 and 50 millimetres were recorded across isolated regions of southern and north-eastern New South Wales, south-eastern Queensland, southern and eastern Victoria, south-western Western Australia, Tasmania, and scattered areas of southern South Australia.

Higher rainfall totals in excess of 50 millimetres were recorded across western and northern Tasmania and far western parts of Western Australia. The highest recorded weekly total was 187 millimetres at Mount Read, in western Tasmania.

In cropping regions, rainfall totals of between 1 and 5 millimetres were recorded in southern and eastern New South Wales. For cropping regions in Victoria, weekly rainfall totals were variable, ranging from little to no rainfall in the north to 15 to 25 millimetres in the far south. In South Australian cropping regions, weekly rainfall totals ranged from 1 to 10 millimetres. In Western Australia, rainfall totals of between 5 and 15 millimetres were recorded across most cropping regions, with higher totals of between 15 and 50 millimetres recorded in western areas. Little to no rainfall was recorded in Queensland, apart from cropping regions the south-east with falls ranging from 1 to 10 millimetres.

Rainfall analysis for the week ending 1 August 2018

Map showing weekly rainfall totals in Australia. Image provided by the Bureau of Meteorology. Please refer to accompanying text for a more detailed description. 

©Commonwealth of Australia 2018, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 1/8/2018

Note: The rainfall analyses and associated maps utilise data contained in the Bureau of Meteorology climate database, the Australian Data Archive for Meteorology (ADAM). The analyses are initially produced automatically from real-time data with limited quality control. They are intended to provide a general overview of rainfall across Australia as quickly as possible after the observations are received. For further information go to Weekly Rainfall Update.

Monthly temperature

July 2018 was Australia’s fifth warmest July on record for the country as a whole; the national monthly mean temperature was 1.24 °C above average. Almost the entire country was warmer than average overall. Daytime maximum temperatures were especially warm, but overnight minimum temperatures were below average in a band from Broome in the north-west to Canberra in the south-east of the country. The mean monthly maximum temperature for Australia as a whole was the second warmest on record at 2.22 °C above average.

Maximum temperature deciles for July 2018

Map showing maximum temperature deciles for Australia. Image provided by the Bureau of Meteorology. Please refer to accompanying text for a more detailed description. 

©Commonwealth of Australia 2018, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 1/8/2018

Minimum temperature deciles for July 2018

Map showing minimum temperature deciles for Australia. Image provided by the Bureau of Meteorology. Please refer to accompanying text for a more detailed description. 

©Commonwealth of Australia 2018, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 1/8/2018

Note: Maximum and minimum temperatures for July 2018 compared with temperature recorded for that period during the historical record (1900 to present). For further information go to Daily maximum temperature for Australia.

Monthly rainfall

Rainfall in July 2018 was generally below average for Australia as a whole. Severely deficient to extremely low rainfall was recorded across much of New South Wales. For the state as a whole it was the fifth-driest July on record, and the driest July since 2002, with numerous stations reporting record low July rainfall. Rainfall was well below average to below average across large areas of central Australia, much of eastern and northern Western Australia and northern and eastern South Australia. In contrast, average to above average rainfall was recorded across the far north-east of New South Wales, southern Victoria, the far south-east of South Australia, northern Queensland, the north of the Northern Territory and the west of Western Australia. Tasmania recorded extremely high rainfall during July 2018.

July 2018 rainfall in cropping regions was generally severely deficient to extremely low in New South Wales. It was below average to average for cropping regions in Queensland. In South Australia it was generally well below average to below average. In cropping regions in Victoria July 2018 rainfall was variable, ranging from well below average in the north to average in the south-west. For Western Australian cropping regions rainfall was generally average, although parts of the far south-east recorded well below average rainfall for this time of year.

Rainfall percentiles for July 2018

Map of the total forecast rainfall for the next 8 days. Image provided by the Bureau of Meteorology. Please refer to accompanying text for a more detailed description. 

Source: Bureau of Meteorology

Note: Rainfall for July 2018 is compared with rainfall recorded for that period during the historical record (1900 to present). For further information, go to Australian Water Availability Project

Monthly soil moisture

Relative upper layer soil moisture in June 2018 was extremely low to well below average across large areas of New South Wales, South Australia, the Northern Territory, northern Victoria and parts of northern and central Western Australia. It was generally average across Queensland, the far northeast of New South Wales, southern Victoria, parts of south-eastern and northern South Australia, Tasmania and the west of Western Australia.

In cropping regions, upper layer soil moisture was extremely low to well below average in New South Wales, northern Victoria and much of South Australia. In contrast, it was generally average in south-western Victoria, Queensland and Western Australia.

Modelled upper layer soil moisture for July 2018

Map of the total forecast rainfall for the next 8 days. Image provided by the Bureau of Meteorology. Please refer to accompanying text for a more detailed description. 

Source: Bureau of Meteorology (Australian Water Resources Assessment Landscape model)

Note: This map shows the levels of modelled upper layer soil moisture (0 to 10 centimetres) during July 2018. This map shows how modelled soil conditions during July 2018 compare with July conditions modelled over the reference period (1911 to 2015). Dark blue areas on the maps were much wetter in July 2018 than during the same period over the reference period. The dark red areas were much drier than during the reference period. The bulk of plant roots occur in the top 20 centimetres of the soil profile. Soil moisture in the upper layer of the soil profile is therefore the most appropriate indicator of the availability of water, particularly for germinating plants. The lower layer soil moisture is a larger, deeper store that is slower to respond to rainfall and tends to reflect accumulated rainfall events over longer time periods.

Relative lower layer soil moisture in July 2018 was extremely low to well below average across much of New South Wales, parts of eastern Victoria, southern and central Queensland, parts of northern and southern South Australia, the Northern Territory and large areas of northern and southern Western Australia. It was average to above across much of northern Queensland, Tasmania, southern and western Victoria, the reminder of South Australia, and western and central Western Australia.

In cropping regions, lower layer soil moisture was extremely low to well below average in New South Wales, eastern Victoria, south-eastern Western Australia, and northern and southern Queensland. It was variable in South Australia, ranging from extremely low on the Eyre Peninsula to average in the Mallee cropping regions. Lower layer soil moisture was generally average in parts of central Queensland, western and central Victoria, and northern and central Western Australia

Modelled lower layer soil moisture for July 2018

Map of the total forecast rainfall for the next 8 days. Image provided by the Bureau of Meteorology. Please refer to accompanying text for a more detailed description. 

Source: Bureau of Meteorology (Australian Water Resources Assessment Landscape model)

Note: This map shows the levels of modelled lower layer soil moisture (10 centimetres to 1 metre) during July 2018. This map shows how modelled soil conditions during June 2018 compare with July conditions modelled over the reference period (1911 to 2015). Dark blue areas on the maps were much wetter in July 2018 than during the same period over the reference period. The dark red areas were much drier than during the reference period. The bulk of plant roots occur in the top 20 centimetres of the soil profile. Soil moisture in the upper layer of the soil profile is therefore the most appropriate indicator of the availability of water, particularly for germinating plants. The lower layer soil moisture is a larger, deeper store that is slower to respond to rainfall and tends to reflect accumulated rainfall events over longer time periods.

Rainfall forecast for the next 8 days

During the next eight days, rainfall is expected across most of the southern half of mainland Australia and Tasmania. Little to no rainfall is forecast across the remainder of the country. Rainfall totals of between 10 and 50 millimetres are forecast for south-western Western Australia, isolated areas of south-eastern New South Wales, southern and alpine areas of Victoria, parts of southern South Australia, and western and northern Tasmania. Heavier falls in excess of 50 millimetres are forecast for western Tasmania, and isolated areas of southern Western Australia and South Australia and alpine regions in Victoria.

In cropping regions, rainfall totals of between 1 and 10 millimetres are forecast for New South Wales. Higher totals of between 5 and 25 millimetres are expected for cropping regions in Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia during the next eight days. Rainfall totals of between 1 and 5 millimetres are forecast for most cropping regions in Queensland.

This rainfall forecast is produced from computer models. As it contains no input from weather forecasters, it is important to check local forecasts and warnings issued by the Bureau of Meteorology.

Total forecast rainfall (mm) for the period 2 to 9 August 2018

Map of the total forecast rainfall for the next 8 days. Image provided by the Bureau of Meteorology. Please refer to accompanying text for a more detailed description. 

©Commonwealth of Australia 2018, Australian Bureau of Meteorology - Issued: 2/8/2018

Commodities

Current indicators – 2 August 2018

IndicatorWeek endedUnitLatest pricePrice week priorWeekly changePrice 12 months priorYear on year changeChart

Selected world indicator prices

Australian Dollar – AUD/USD Exchange Rate01-AugUS$/A$0.740.740%0.8-8%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Wheat – US no. 2 hard red winter wheat, fob Gulf31-JulUS$/t2492318%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.21814%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Coarse Grains – US no. 2 yellow corn, fob Gulf01-AugUS$/t1661604%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.1538%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Canola – Rapeseed, Europe, fob Hamburga31-JulUS$/t4434274%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.4244%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Cotton – Cotlook 'A' Index01-AugUSc/lb98.494.15%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.82.619%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Sugar – Intercontinental Exchange, nearby futures, no.11 contract01-AugUSc/lb10.811.1-3%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.14.7-27%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Wool – Eastern Market Indicator12-JulAc/kg clean1,9811,994<1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.1,52230%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Wool – Western Market Indicator13-JulAc/kg clean2,1292,154-1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.1,57036%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart

Selected domestic crop indicator prices

Milling Wheat – ASW1, track quote, Port Adelaide, SA31-JulA$/t3062896%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.23132%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Feed Wheat – General purpose, Sydney, NSW01-AugA$/t3853753%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.26247%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Feed Barley – Sydney, NSW01-AugA$/t3903608%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.24659%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Canola – Portland, Vic.23-JulA$/t5295231%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.4986%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Grain Sorghum – Sydney, NSW01-AugA$/t375380 -1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.30921%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart

Selected domestic livestock indicator prices

Beef – Eastern Young Cattle Indicator26-JulAc/kg cwt5035030%584-14%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Mutton – Mutton indicator (18-24 kg fat score 2-3), Vic27-JulAc/kg cwt493526-6%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.41319%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Lamb – Eastern States Trade Lamb Indicator26-JulAc/kg cwt7987585%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.57639%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points. chart
Pig – Eastern Seaboard (60.1-75 kg), average of buyers & sellers20-JulAc/kg cwt247249<1%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.276-11%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Goat – Eastern States (12.1-16 kg)30-JulAc/kg cwt5565560%647-14%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Live cattle – Light steers ex Darwin to Indonesia14-JulAc/kg lwt2902852%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.nana chart
Live sheep – Live wether (Muchea WA saleyard) to Middle East14-May$/head95nana116-18%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart

Global Dairy Trade weighted average pricesa

Dairy – Whole milk powder17-JulUS$/t2,9732,9052%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.3,114-5%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Dairy – Skim milk powder17-JulUS$/t1,9591,9132%This is an image of an white arrow in a green circle indicating an increase in percentage points.2,024-3%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Dairy – Cheddar cheese17-JulUS$/t3,5963,713-3%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.4,112-13%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart
Dairy – Anhydrous milk fat17-JulUS$/t5,6295,937-5%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points.6,577-14%This is an image of a white arrow in a red circle indicating a decrease in percentage points. chart

a Global Dairy Trade prices are updated twice monthly on the first and third Tuesday of each month.

Selected world indicator prices
Selected domestic crop indicator prices
Selected domestic livestock indicator prices
Global dairy trade weighted average prices
Movements in selected fruit and vegetable prices
Data attribution

Water

Water storages, water markets and water allocations - current week

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Last reviewed:
02 Aug 2018