As Australians look forward to a lockdown-free summer of picnics and barbeques, meteorologists warn the season could be a wash out.
A La Nina season is likely to develop and bring thunderstorms, rain, and flooding to NSW and cyclones in Queensland.
Meteorologist Joel Pippard told Daily Mail Australia the weather pattern could result in Australia having more extreme events in October to April.
‘There is the potential for big rain events – especially more in February and March when the ocean waters are at their warmest,’ he said.
‘Even when its not raining there will be more humidity in NSW and Queensland. And there’s also a high chance of increased cyclones in northern Australia.’
There is some relief, however, with Mr Pippard predicting the months of November and December, as spring transitions into summer, to be perfect for outdoor activities, before the drenching rain begins after New Year’s.
‘Early on, the summer looks to be similar to last year’s La Nina and will start off warm and mild but then the moisture is set to build up in January and February,’ he said.
‘There’s about twice the normal likelihood of this La Nina developing.’
And weary Melburnians who have endured the longest lockdown in the world will be rewarded with a dry summer great for outdoor entertaining.
The milder conditions early on could extend through summer and provide vaccinated residents with the chance to get out and enjoy the city’s parks and cafes again.
‘For Victoria there will be a bit of both – definitely some substantial thunderstorms but mixed in with longer lasting periods of hotter and dryer weather than further north,’ Mr Pippard said.
On the west coast, there is forecast to be another weather pattern known as the Indian Ocean Dipole that would affect WA’s summer conditions.
NSW AREAS MOST LIKLEY TO SEE SEVERE SUMMER STORMS
‘This increases the chance of tropical cyclones significantly and the system moves south but this is mixed with unusually hot and dry weather to form two extremes,’ Mr Pippard.
‘Overall in Australia there’s been a warming trend we’ve been seeing as we head into mid-Spring but this will change as these tropical systems ramp up over Summer and bring wet weather’.
Mr Pippard said the La Nina system will result in temperatures staying close to averages on the east coast.
And after three years of severe drought from 2017 -2019 another year of strong rains will likely be a welcome relief for farmers.
Growers across the country have had bumper crops this year thanks to increased rains – with NSW going from 100 per cent of the state in drought in 2019 to just five per cent by 2021.
But with the storms also comes the potential for flooding – which was seen early in 2021 as large parts of inland NSW were devastated by torrential summer rain.
NSW is in for a 70 to 80 per cent chance of above average rainfall and the thunderstorm season will be particularly active – bringing damaging winds, hail and lightning.Internet Explorer Channel Network