The Australian Climate: El Nino and La Nina

Whilst I have no intention of turning this blog into The Weather Channel, there is only one subject to talk about today.


Because we are still in winter and this is what happened in Brisbane today…..

Todays Temperature in Brisbane

Todays Temperature in Brisbane

And to save anyone straining their eyes…….

That's about 97°F

That’s about 97°F

I think even the Australians have been astonished by the speed with which winter has finished, spring has been skipped and summer seems to be here. It was only a couple of weeks ago that we were still using the air conditioning on reverse heat during the evenings to take the chill out of the house just before my daughter went to bed.

Literally within the space of a few days, evening temperatures here have gone from being moderately crisp to a balmy heat. As I am writing this it is 7.30 in the evening here and outside it is still 26°C, that’s 80°F.

El Niño and La Nina

So what are El Niño and La Nina then? Well it’s all to do with changes in the atmosphere and the Pacific Ocean. When we have a La Nina it rains a lot. When we have an El Niño, it gets very dry and very hot, but that’s here in Australia.

El Niño affects weather in many parts of the world though. Whilst we would definitely get below average rainfall here in the western Pacific around Indonesia and Australia, an El Niño has the opposite effect in central and eastern Pacific where it brings increased rainfall.

Right now, I guess we have us an El Nino.

But this is just Brisbane, what’s the weather like elsewhere around the country?

Melbourne and Adelaide.

A severe weather warning has been issued and they are going to be experiencing winds of possibly more than 100 km per hour and damage is expected. It certainly won’t feel like summer there, with temperatures at only around 15°C.


Showers with strong winds also, the temperature there is about 20°c.


Cloudy with light showers and temperatures at around 19°C.


Brrrrr! Showers, a bit windy aswell and just 11°C. Crikey mate! Even Hobart is warmer down in Tassie – its 13°C there.

So it looks like South East Queensland, and in particular Brisbane, is the hottest place in this big country right now. Even hotter than Darwin which apparently only got 31°C today.

Looks like El Nino has kicked winter into touch around here.

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{ 4 comments… add one }
  • BobinOz October 11, 2010, 6:37 pm |

    No, no, no! El Nino was last year. It was a very short El Nino too, ending abruptly in January. We are now being overwhelmed by a huge great La Nina, so big they have labelled it La Nina Soakio Right Through.

    I hope you didn’t suffer too much damage up there Geoff. And I hope it stops soon, I want to go to the beach!

  • Geoff October 9, 2010, 8:15 pm |

    What was that about an El Nino? We had 260mm of rain yesterday here on the Sunshine Coast.

  • Steve Povey September 4, 2009, 3:40 pm |

    It’s been like that here in Auckland too, not quite as hot mind you, but still warm enough to sit out in the sun at our local watering hole, working ourselves a nice tan up ready for when we get across there in October!!

    • BobinOz September 4, 2009, 7:24 pm |

      Good idea. You’ll need the start of a tan before you come over because it will sure be scorchio here this summer!

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