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A long, hot, dry stretch in the south of the great southern

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A long, hot, dry stretch in the south of the great southern

Post by shammy on Thu Jan 03, 2008 5:49 pm

4th January,2008

IT WAS Australia's sixth hottest year on record but — as with anything in a continent so vast — 2007 was hardly uniform.

In the tropical north, temperatures were in line with long-term averages, but records for heat were set across south-eastern states: in Victoria, NSW and South Australia.

Conversely, national average rainfall was up, largely due to a wetter than average year in parts of northern and central Australia and despite a sixth year of drought in the Murray-Darling Basin — the equal longest dry stretch in its history.

According to the Bureau of Meteorology's 2007 Climate Statement, Australia has been warmer than average for 16 of the past 18 years.

Blair Trewin, of the bureau's National Climate Centre, said even taking into account the trend of warming, last year — 0.67 degrees above average — was hotter than expected.

"We've seen warming in Australia of about 0.8 of a degree since 1950, which is fairly similar to what has happened elsewhere in the world," Dr Trewin said.

The report said climate change projections predicted further drying across southern Australia over the decades ahead, but it was unclear how much of it could be blamed on human-induced warming.


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