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Thangool's driest summer but rain brings promise

A photo from one of the storms which graced Biloela near farm land.
A photo from one of the storms which graced Biloela near farm land. Peter Turner

WITH just 69.8mm of rainfall recorded for the whole season, Thangool officially recorded its driest summer on record since 1924.

But autumn is already shaping up to be a better and wetter season, with last weekend bringing falls on just under 50mm to the Biloela and Thangool area.

On Saturday, March 4, 5.4mm of rainfall was recorded at the Thangool airport, while Sunday recorded 43.6mm.

Peter Turner, who is currently working around the Biloela/Thangool area, has had a love for weather and studying climate since he was in primary school.

Normally based in Rockhampton, the avid storm chaser and Facebook weather page owner says generally the climate in Biloela and the surrounding area contrasts with the seasons.

"Summer rainfall with warm to hot conditions. Winters cold with frosts, which is usually ideal for cropping and cattle farming. Rainfall is variable depending on climatic factors,” he said.

"The last summer has been trying for the locals coming out of a strong El Nino, which had the promise of good rain.

"Unfortunately, climatic factors prevented that from happening, which contributed to the driest summer since 1924.”

Peter says central Queensland is moving into a climate that is fast becoming more erratic due to the effects of a warming planet.

"Computer models that both meteorologists and storm chasers use to forecast or to work out the best places to chase are having more sudden shifts, with models struggling at times,” he said.

"The situation in the Biloela and Thangool area is not looking good, with parched farmland and bare dirt in places. Dams are empty or near empty creek beds dry.

"While any rain is welcomed with open arms by the locals, particularly those doing it hard on the land, the rainfall has been sporadic and patchy, with many still missing being under those falls.

"I fear with climate indicators heading towards another El Nino that if rain does not fall before the cooler, drier months, and El Nino traditionally being drier and hotter during warmer months, the situation could become quite worrying for the region.”

Topics:  biloela rain thangool weather


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