Paper summary: historical extreme rainfall events in southeastern Australia

Most instrumental weather data that we use to study rainfall in Australia only extend back to 1900, which makes it hard to capture the full range of our highly variable climate. In a new study we have used historical rainfall observations in Melbourne, Adelaide and Sydney to add an extra 60 years of information toContinue reading “Paper summary: historical extreme rainfall events in southeastern Australia”

Visualising climate change

Recently I was invited to talk to the computer science students at John Monash Science School by their wonderful teacher and all round superstar, Dr Linda McIver. The students had been working on different ways to show climate change data, Linda told me. Could we talk about that? A chance to look at visualisations ofContinue reading “Visualising climate change”

How’s about that weather then? 26 and 28 March 1844

People love talking about the weather. Whether it’s on Twitter in 2017, or in letters to the Editor in 1841, we are never short of a meteorological-based conversation starter, particularly in Australia. The aim of these posts is to share some of the events that piqued people’s interest back in the day. Not always theContinue reading “How’s about that weather then? 26 and 28 March 1844”

Australia’s meteorological anniversary

Today is the anniversary of the First Fleet’s arrival in Sydney Cove, only 228 years ago. A defining moment, certainly, although more and more people agree that the 26th of January is not the right day to honour all things Australian. To commemorate the date, let’s have a look at Australia’s earliest weather observations. Their history, funnilyContinue reading “Australia’s meteorological anniversary”

Teleco-what now?

This post contains a lot of links to scientific articles that may be paywalled, or just as bad, really technical. Just let me know if you need a copy of any of them, or if they don’t make sense. Ah, teleconnection. What a word. Much like ‘madrugada‘ does not have a translation into English, orContinue reading “Teleco-what now?”

A brief history of weather observations in Melbourne

In January this year, the official Melbourne meteorological observatory shut its ventilated doors and moved up the road, from the corner of La Trobe and Victoria Streets to Olympic Park. Moving a white box and some scientific instruments might not seem like a big deal, but the 2km move marks the end of a longContinue reading “A brief history of weather observations in Melbourne”

Extending the temperature record of southeastern Australia

This is a guest post that I was kindly invited to write for climanrecon.wordpress.com. Climanrecon is currently looking at the non-climatic features of the Bureau of Meteorology’s raw historical temperature observations, which are freely available online. As Neville Nicholls recently discussed in The Conversation, the more the merrier! Southeastern Australia is the most highly populatedContinue reading “Extending the temperature record of southeastern Australia”

28 June 1836: Snowfall in Sydney

My PhD was on the past climate of southeastern Australia. This involved looking at lots of different sources of old weather data from the 1800s. Newspapers, government records and farmer’s diaries: each source an important clue to the history of Australia’s climate. While my work focussed mainly on quantitative data (numbers) rather than qualitative descriptionsContinue reading “28 June 1836: Snowfall in Sydney”