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La Nina brings record rainfall

Wednesday, 15 June 2011 4:34 p.m.

If you think this year has been a lot wetter than usual, you're probably quite right.

Bay of Plenty Regional Council Data Services Manager Glenn Ellery said the La Nina weather pattern, which brings more frequent wet and warm northerly conditions to the Bay of Plenty, is the likely cause of the high rainfall totals.

"This year has been exceedingly wet so far for the Bay of Plenty, with monthly rainfalls being above normal for five of the last six months," Mr Ellery said.

So far this year (1 January 2011 to 31 May 2011) rainfall totals in the Bay of Plenty climate stations have recorded above average amounts:
• Tauranga (Airport) = 911mm, 193 percent of the normal January - May total
• Whakatane (Airport) = 1029mm, 238 percent of the normal January - May total
• Rotorua (Airport) =1038mm, 200 percent of the normal January - May total

Mr Ellery said the Whakatāne rainfall is the highest January to May total recorded since records began in 1975 and is equivalent to 88 percent of the normal annual total.

"Rotorua's rainfall is the highest January to May total recorded since records began in 1967 and, along with Tauranga, has received the equivalent to 75 percent of the normal annual total," Mr Ellery said.

The NIWA National Climate Centre's latest outlook for early winter (May to July) indicates that temperatures overall are likely to be above average across the North Island.

Although an overall pattern of above average temperatures is expected, periods of cold weather will still occur from time to time. 

Seasonal rainfall is likely to be normal or above normal in the north and east of the North Island, which includes the Bay of Plenty.

The NIWA seasonal climate outlook for the May - July period can be found in the climate section at
www.niwa.co.nz

Live monitoring information can be found on the Bay of Plenty Regional Council website at www.boprc.govt.nz 

Ends
 

Flood event 29 Jan 2011 highres