Region hotter and drier: weather experts
Geraldton has become hotter and drier over the past three decades, according to newly released Bureau of Meteorology climate data.
The data, which features 30 years of climate reports around Geraldton, Mullewa, Three Springs and Carnamah, shows that annual rainfall has decreased by 8 per cent.
In its climate guide report, the bureau also said there had been more hot days, rainfall had decreased in autumn, dry years had occurred 12 times and wet years four times.
Winter rainfall had continued to be reliable, however livestock was said to be suffering from more days of heat stress.
Despite the increasingly arid conditions, the report said the drop in rain was not abnormal, dubbing it “within the range of natural variability.”
Geraldton’s climate data was part of a national project to better prepare Australia’s agricultural sector for future weather patterns.
The bureau said the information should help primary producers make informed decisions about their business and livelihoods.
According to the guide, the Northern agricultural region — of which Geraldton is a part — covers some 8.5 million hectares of land, 73 per cent of which is used for agricultural production.
The region was said to have bolstered WA’s economy in 2017-18 by almost $1.4 billion.
Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.
Sign up for our emails