"Global warming has led to higher summer temperatures across Sydney over the
past 30 years. However, our data analysis shows very hot summer days are
becoming much more common in Western Sydney than in coastal Sydney. These
hotter summers are also getting longer.
Although January and February are usually the warmest months, Greater Sydney
summers now extend from December to March. For example, the city’s
record-setting March has been the hottest month this summer. Summers are
expanding and winters shrinking across subtropical and temperate Australia.
Our newly published analysis of temperature data from 1962-2021 shows one in
ten days in summer reached temperatures of 35.4℃ or more in Western Sydney.
That’s a full 5℃ hotter than near the coast, where one in ten days exceeded
30.4℃. One in 20 days reached 37.8℃ or more in the west – the equivalent figure
near the coast was 33.6℃.
Furthermore, very hot days have become more common over the past 30 years in
Western Sydney, but not near the coast. The difference in maximum temperatures
between the regions can be as much as 10℃.
So what explains the startling difference between two parts of the same city?
In our research, we show the influence of four climate drivers: El Niño-La
Niña, Southern Annular Mode, global temperatures and local Tasman Sea
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics