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A cold front is bringing strong winds, patchy rain & showers to SA, Vic & Tas, tending to snow about the alps. Cold southwesterly winds behind the front brings showers to southern SA & WA with isolated storms for SA. A high directs humid easterlies & showers over northeast Qld.

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Min

Max

Mostly CloudySydneyNSW

21.6°C

11°C
23°C

RainMelbourneVIC

11.4°C

11°C
14°C

Mostly SunnyBrisbaneQLD

23.0°C

13°C
23°C

ShowersPerthWA

16.3°C

10°C
18°C

Possible ShowerAdelaideSA

14.6°C

9°C
16°C

Late ShowerCanberraACT

15.6°C

2°C
16°C

WindyHobartTAS

13.5°C

10°C
14°C

Mostly CloudyDarwinNT

29.9°C

21°C
30°C

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Today, 12:59AM UTC

Severe weather as cold front lashes SE Aus

An active cold front is crossing southeastern Australia, with severe weather warnings for damaging winds issued early on Thursday morning for parts of Victoria and NSW. The front was preceded overnight by a band of rain which crossed southern parts of SA, northern and western Tas, and the western half of Vic. Totals of up to 10 mm were registered in many locations, with slightly higher totals between 10 and 20 mm in the Adelaide Hills and NW Tasmania. Melbourne has only received a couple of millimetres in most suburbs, which is a fairly typical result for a winter system like this where winds and moisture are coming out of the north, but heavier showers can be expected on Saturday as winds turn westerly with the arrival of a second front. Meanwhile the band of showers continues its eastward march accompanied by gusty winds that are reaching gale force in mountain districts. Wind gusts have already exceeded 100 km/h at Mt William in The Grampians in western Vic, as well as the Victorian alpine weather stations of Mt Buller and Mt Hotham in the early hours of the morning, while Thredbo Top Station in NSW saw a gust of 115 km/h just after 10 am. A wild storm went through early last night. Smashed a few things but everyone is fine pic.twitter.com/QnsfdEaPpo — Shayne Calliss (@SCalliss) July 24, 2024 Another factor making life unpleasant in the high country this Thursday is the temperature. Last week we told you that the "feels like" temp dipped below –20°C at Thredbo Top Station, and it has already nudged the –20°C mark today. But the actual air temperature (the still air temp) is slightly above zero, meaning the mountains are seeing a mixture of rain and wet snow at higher elevations. As cooler air sets in behind the front, the snow line should drop to around 1400m, which is around the base level of our lowest resorts. Around five to ten cm of fresh snow could accumulate by Friday morning. As ever, check our snow page for the latest. A similar amount of snow could again settle by Sunday morning, but the difference with the second front coming this weekend is that it will usher in significantly colder air. Over the weekend, the snow line in Vic, NSW and the ACT could drop as low as 600 to 700 metres, while in southern Tasmania, snow could fall to the 400 metre level. But for now, the weather is all about the front crossing the southeast this Thursday with its showers, strong winds, and significant temperature differentials. At 10:30 am, Sydney was 19.6°C in the warm air ahead of the front while Melbourne was a chilly 11.1°C (which felt much colder under strong northwesterlies). Image: Temps around 11 am in SE Australia with Sydney basking in 20°C or thereabouts and Melbourne shivering  in 10 degrees or so. Sydney tends to be well protected from all but the strongest fronts out of the west and northwest, and is expected to see max temps of 20°C or higher for the next few days. That'll change on Sunday as cold air arrives with the stronger front, wiping a good five degrees or more off maximum temps.

24 Jul 2024, 8:19AM UTC

Paris Olympics weather: what are July and August like? 

If the weather conditions during the Paris 2024 Olympics are close to average, then temperatures will be remarkably similar to midsummer temps in Australia's two largest cities Sydney and Melbourne.   The Paris 2024 Olympics run from Friday, July 26 to Saturday, August 11, so we’ll focus on both the July and August averages for the for the French capital. The temperature in Paris Paris averages a maximum of 26°C in July and 25°C in August, with an average overnight low of 16°C in both months. These are the two warmest months of the year for both maximums and minimums.    As stated, this is very similar to both Sydney and Melbourne. Melbourne's average maximum is 25.9°C in both January and February, its two hottest months. Sydney’s average maximums in Jan and Feb are 26°C and 25.8°C respectively.  Rainfall in Paris  The average Paris rainfall is 73 mm in July and 60 mm in August, with thunderstorms relatively common in both months. Stormy weather is associated with high levels of humidity, which would make life uncomfortable for athletes.    By way of contrast for Australians, Sydney averages over 100 mm in Jan and Feb (which is why the Test cricket is so often rain-affected), while Melbourne averages slightly less than 50 mm in both months.    So while Paris has average maximum temps during the Olympic period which are similar to both Sydney and Melbourne in a typical midsummer, Paris would on average be drier than Sydney but a little wetter than Melbourne.  Paris summer extremes During high summer when the Olympics are on, the main way that Paris differs from Australia's two most populous cities is its lack of extremes.    As most Australians would know, both Sydney and Melbourne have exceeded 45°C in the past. Indeed Penrith in outer western Sydney hit a scorching 48.9°C in January 2020. That was at the weather station out at Penrith Lakes where Aussie Olympic canoe slalom champ Jessica Fox trains.   The highest temperature ever recorded in Paris was 42.6°C on July 25, 2019, but the city has only recorded temperatures of 40°C a few times in its history. So extreme heat is unlikely. Image: You can never have too many pics of the Eiffel Tower in stories about Paris. Source:iStock. So what will the Paris weather be like over the next two weeks? Warm weather with maximums in the mid to high twenties is forecast from Thursday through to the end of the weekend.   So you'd have to say the forecast for the first few days of the Olympics is close to perfect. Things then appear to warm up early next week, with top temps in the low 30s expected on both Monday and Tuesday. A continuation of warmer-than-average maximums throughout the first week appears likely at this stage.    As for the all-important Opening Ceremony – which will break tradition by being held along the banks of the River Seine rather than in a stadium – showers are forecast on Friday morning but the French Meteorological Agency Meteo France is forecasting the chance of clearing skies in the evening. Here's hoping.   You can check the official 15-day Paris forecast here.

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24 Jul 2024, 3:39AM UTC

Could Australia see a negative IOD in 2024?

A wet spring could be on the cards for large parts of Australia, with several models suggesting a negative Indian Ocean Dipole could develop in the Indian Ocean.  A negative Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) refers to a pattern of sea surface temperatures in the tropical Indian Ocean that causes more moisture-laden air to flow towards Australia.  These negative IOD events, which occur on average once every five years, typically enhance northwest cloudbands over Australia and produce above-average rain over large areas of the country's south and southeast during winter and spring.  The Bureau of Meteorology declared yesterday that there is an increased chance of a negative IOD in spring. This declaration comes after four out of five climate models are now predicting a negative IOD event to emerge in spring, before returning to neutral during the beginning of summer. Interestingly, the Bureaus’ model is erring on the positive side during spring.   Images: Global climate model IOD forecasts (top to bottom) for September, October and December.    Phases of the IOD have impacted Australia’s weather during the last three years, with negative events occurring during 2021 and 2022, while in 2023 we saw a strong positive IOD. As such, 2021-2023 is tied with 1996-1998 as the longest stretch in which the IOD was observed to be in a non-neutral state.   If we were to see a negative IOD develop in 2024, this would become the longest stretch we have seen the IOD in a non-neutral state since reliable records of the IOD began in 1960. As you can see in the graph below the IOD is currently in a neutral state, which means it’s not impacting Australia’s weather this winter.  For a negative IOD to be declared, the Bureau requires sea surface temperatures in the Indian Ocean to have remained near or exceeded the negative IOD threshold of -0.4°C (blue in image above) for the last eight weeks.  For a negative IOD to develop, the ocean and atmosphere need to be ‘coupled’, which means that the difference in sea surface temperatures in the western (cooler) and eastern (warmer) Indian Ocean is sustained by an atmospheric circulation. This requires winds to be more westerly and northerly than usual over northern Australia, allowing warmer than normal water to be dragged towards Australia’s northwest coast.  There are signs that the atmosphere is mirroring the oceans, like the winds being more northerly than normal near Indonesia, but there is a long way to go yet.  Impacts of a negative IOD  A negative IOD can have a significant impact on Australia’s weather during winter and spring.  The pattern of sea surface temperatures during negative IOD events typically cause more atmospheric moisture to flow over Australia from the northwest.   This moisture can fuel vast northwest cloudbands, which can cause:  Widespread rain  Increased thunderstorm activity  Flooding  An increase in snow, particularly in winter and early spring  Reduced solar output    The map below shows how negative IOD events typically affect Australia’s winter-spring rainfall.   Image: This map shows the impact a negative IOD would typically have on Australia's rainfall during winter and spring. Source: Bureau of Meteorology  The increased cloud cover and associated rain caused by negative IOD episodes can cause:  Below average daytime temperatures across large areas of the country.  A reduced risk of early season extreme heat   Warmer than average nights, with cloud trapping the heat in overnight.  Increased humidity across large parts of the country.   Images: These maps show the impact a negative IOD would typically have on Australia's maximum (top) and minimum (bottom) temperatures during winter and spring. Source: Bureau of Meteorology   We will continue to watch the Indian Ocean closely in the coming months and update you. 

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22 Jul 2024, 3:17AM UTC

Another windy week

There has been a major shift in the wind pattern over southern Australia, with another great wind power week on the cards.   During autumn and the beginning of winter, the National Electricity Market (NEM) saw a wind drought in response to abnormally high pressure, forcing cold fronts and the associated wind south of Australia.  There has been a shift in this pattern in recent weeks, with plentiful cold fronts and low-pressure systems drifting across southern Australia. This has been influenced by a long wave trough impacting Australia in recent weeks.  Last week, the NEM saw its windiest week in more than a year, contributing 897 GWh/week to the grid.   Image: Wind weekly contribution to generation (GWh/week) for the last year leading up to Sunday, July 21, 2024. Source: OpenNEM  The cold front that impacted southern Australia late last week brought widespread damaging winds to several states and territories.  This week will be windy again as several cold fronts sweep across the south of the continent. The image below shows Weatherzone’s NEM wind farm output for the next week.  Image: Weatherzone’s National Electricity Market wind farm output for the next 7 days in MWH.  You can see the windiest days this week are expected to be Tuesday and Wednesday, as a cold front moves across southeastern Australia. A low pressure system will then move across the Bight later this week, bringing another burst of strong winds to the region.  Image: Instantaneous wind gust forecast for 1pm AEST on Wednesday, July 24, according to ECMWF.  Winds are likely to reach damaging strength over parts of southeastern Australia during this week. Tas could see damaging winds impacting the state each day between Tuesday and Saturday.  Meanwhile parts of SA, Vic, NSW and the ACT should see damaging winds on Wednesday and Thursday. These winds have the potential to cause cut outs, where wind turbines are turned off in strong winds to prevent damage. Most wind farms turn off the turbines if the wind speed reaches the ‘cut off’ wind speed of 90km/h (25m/s), which means that the wind power is not being harnessed. During these periods of intense winds, wind power capacities will be reduced if the turbines remain turned off.     This westerly wind pattern will also bring a warm week to parts of southeastern Australia and increased rainfall over parts of southwestern WA, Tas and southern Vic and the western plains in NSW.   Image: Accumulated rain forecast for the week leading up to 10am Monday, July 29, according to ECMWF  The increased cloud associated with the frontal activity will reduce solar output in these areas.  Looking further ahead, we should continue to see increased wind and frontal activity across southern Australia during late July and August in response to the Sudden Stratospheric Warming event.   

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05 Jul 2024, 2:14AM UTC

Unusual wind direction to elevate wind power

After a lull in the winds this week, wind power is set to pick up from rock bottom as a rare easterly wind surge impacts Qld, NSW and SA.  Wind power has been slack this week across the National Electricity Market (NEM) in response to a stubborn high-pressure system which has parked itself over the Bight.  Image: Mean Sea Level Pressure (MSLP) at 10am on Friday, July 5  This high will continue to sit over the Bight and Tas, until it finally moves east into the Tasman Sea on Monday, July 8.  The image below shows that we saw low wind power in the order of 30 to 60 GWh/day in response to this high earlier this week, but wind has picked up slightly to 100 GWh/day on Thursday, July 4.  Image: Wind contribution to generation (GW) during the last 30 days leading up to Thursday, July 4. Source: OpenNEM  Usually with high pressure sitting over the Bight, wind power should continue to be low into next week.  However, the images below show a rare easterly wind surge elevating winds slightly across parts of Qld, NSW and SA from Friday and possibly Vic on Monday.  Images: Instantaneous wind gust forecast between Friday, July 5 and Thursday, July 11  While it is common for easterly winds to move over Australia, it is the strength of the wind that is unusual. The strongest winds over southern Australia, typically originate from the north or south, while for the east coast, westerly winds are typically the strongest.   These winds are normally associated with cold fronts sweeping over the country. This weekend we will see easterly winds strengthen as they feed into a cut of low over SA cradled by a high-pressure system in the Bight.  The easterly wind surge will not match the strength of winds associated with cold fronts, so wind power will remain low to medium across Qld, NSW. In South Australia, wind speeds over the weekend should be strong, especially about the Flinders Ranges and western slopes from Saturday morning. As of 2:50pm Friday, there is a damaging wind warning out for these areas. Wind farms near Port Augusta could see winds reaching 90km/h from Saturday morning, with the potential for cut outs. The image below shows that the wind farm output across the NEM should increase ever so slightly in the coming days, compared to the very low winds we saw earlier this week.  The image below shows that the wind farm output across the NEM should increase ever so slightly in the coming days, compared to the very low winds we saw earlier this week.    Image: Weatherzone’s Opticast Wind Farm Output for the NEM from Friday, July 5 to Friday, July 12.  The stronger easterly winds in these states, will also be accompanied by a thick northeasterly cloudband stretching from the Coral Sea down to SA. You can see in the image below that it has already begun thickening up and producing rainfall in these areas.   Image: Himawari-9 satellite image at 11:50am AEST on Friday, July 5  This cloudband is likely to reduce solar output in these states between Friday and early next week.  So, when is decent wind power coming?  You can see in the image above wind power is forecast to increase above 150 GWh day later next week in the NEM, with strong cold front finally able to make its way across southern Australia.  To find out more, please visit our contact page or email us at business@weatherzone.com.au. 

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