News

Long-term rain ‘unlikely’

USQ Professor Roger Stone. Photo Dave Noonan / The Chronicle, The Chronicle Toowoomba
USQ Professor Roger Stone. Photo Dave Noonan / The Chronicle, The Chronicle Toowoomba Dave Noonan

DECEMBER rain was the exception, not the rule, and the odds of the drought breaking were "slim", according to a leading academic.

Professor Roger Stone, a climatologist at the University of Southern Queensland, said he and his team could hardly believe it when they saw incoming rain on their charts in November.

"This could be regarded as useful relief rain, rather than any long-term shift," he said.

"Unfortunately, the pattern in the Pacific (ocean) is still fairly much the same.

"December showed up as the best spark in an otherwise dry period."

He said a sudden burst of easterly winds across the equator on the Pacific Ocean in November had manifested as rain three weeks later, in accordance with USQ's rainfall charts.

The current weather cycle, which he described as "borderline El Nino", was comparable with that seen between 1991 and 1995, when drought was occasionally relieved with heavy downpours.

Professor Stone works internationally with organisations like the United Nations.

He believes eastern Australia, Indonesia, parts of India, South Africa, north-east Brazil and Central America were facing almost identical drought conditions.

Meanwhile, Central China, Western Europe and Eastern Africa are at risk of flooding due to incessant rain.

"The world is usually out of balance, sadly," he said.

He said the drought, if it were to end, would end in autumn, although this was "unlikely".

"Through our long-term models from Europe and the USA, which model ocean temperatures, it is not showing up as a likely situation," he said.

"Perhaps people could make some money by buying cattle in central Queensland as the price jumps up.

"We are keeping our eyes open to opportunities."


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Origin to move staff into region's towns

Origin's operational workforce will be moved out of the Condabri camp by September.

Permanent Origin staff to move into towns

Biennial Rodeo 'biggest ever' in Chinchilla

LIVE FAST: The Chinchilla Melon Festival Rodeo on Friday night attracted huge crowds, nominations and prize money.

'(It was) the biggest rodeo we've ever had there': Rodeo President

Horror as Tim Nicholls eats a melon

FACE FIRST: LNP leader Tim Nicholls gets a face full of melon as WDRC Mayor Paul McVeigh looks on in horror, at the Chinchilla Melon Festival on Saturday.

LNP leader visits Melon Festival, gets melon on face

Local Partners

Living End, Grinspoon stars hit stage for American Idiot

GET a sneak peek at Green Day's American Idiot The Musical as we go behind the scenes to meet the stars at a QPAC rehearsal.

Samuel L Jackson dismisses La La Land ahead of Oscars

Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone in a scene from the movie La La Land.

Hollywood actor and Oscars voter says Denzel should win top gong

Live performance of Sci-fi classic to open Science Festival

Qld Symphony Orchestra perform live to 2001: A Space Odyssey.

Festival will host A Live Presentation of 2001: A Space Odyssey.

Former Family Matters stare accused of child abuse

Reginald VelJohnson, left, and Darius McCrary arrive at the TV Land Awards on Sunday, April 19, 2009 in Universal City, Calif.

Darius McCrary has been accused of child abuse

Bindi Irwin's birthday tribute to her dad

Bindi Irwin

Bindi Irwin has paid tribute to her dad on his 55th birthday

Reality TV show gives Maryborough a boost

*WARNING EMBARGOED until 9.15pm Monday January 30* Sean Hollands and Susan Rawlings pictured after their wedding on the TV series Married At First Sight. Supplied by Channel 9.

Maryborough looks good on reality TV show.

Buderim dad rejects gay son's emotional plea for second time

LOVERS: Grant and Chris have been together for more than three years, and Chris' parents refuse to acknowledge their son's fiance.

Son’s emotional plea rejected again by unmoved father

$140k damage: landlord says property trashed, contaminated

He had what he calls "the tenants from hell"

Submarine, buses and 3000 tyres removed in $100K clean up

The list of things removed from this property is beyond astonishing

Popular island resort sells to loaded international investor

OUR PICK: Chris Foey's colourful shot of one of Gladstone's great tourism hot spots, Heron Island.

International investor snaps up piece of Gladstone paradise.

Ipswich facing housing shortage: Property expert

Matusik Property Insights director Michael Matusik.

What's next for the city's housing market

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!