Australian Drought Likely to Worsen Due to +IOD Regime

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Persistent dryness is focused on South America and Australia

South America: An intense negative phase of the Antarctic oscillation (-AAO) has spawned an active pattern of unusually intense southern hemisphere mid-latitude frontal systems and attendant storms currently located either side of South America (Fig. 1). While the associated very changeable temperature air masses are affecting Argentina the prevailing precipitation pattern continues dry (Fig. 2-3).

Fig. 1: Satellite view identifies strong frontal systems either side of South America.

Fig. 2-3: The GFS OP percent of normal rainfall forecast for days 1-7 and days 8-14 across South America emphasize more dryness.

Australia: The Australian Meteorology Bureau emphasizes presence of positive phase of the Indian Ocean Dipole (+IOD) lasting the next several months which strongly favors a dry climate for central and southern Australia. Current soil moisture anomalies indicate widespread very much below to lowest on record soil moisture anomalies (Fig. 4) likely to worsen.

Fig. 4: The July 2019 soil moisture anomaly analysis across Australia.