IT came out on Monday. But I have only just seen it – the climate summary for Australia for 2008.
The Australian Bureau of Meteorology could have concluded that last year was the third coolest this century, but instead opted for 14th warmest on record. Certainly, the available information compiled from thermometer readings suggests the last seven years have been particularly warm relative to the last 100; the Bureau calculating 0.41 degrees C above the standard 1961-1990 average.
[click on the charts for larger images]
The overall Australian mean rainfall total for 2008 was 466 mm, which is close to the long-term average of 472 mm. The south east of the country, including parts of the Murray Darling Basin, continued to experience below average rainfall.
Annual Australian Climate Statement 2008 issued by the Australian Bureau of Meteorology on January 5, 2009. http://www.bom.gov.au/announcements/media_releases/climate/change/20090105.shtml