African Music

Sydney Records Wettest Year Since Records Began in 1858

Sydney was deluged with rain on Thursday with more downpours forecast

Australia’s biggest city has recorded 2,213mm of rainfall, with 86 days of the year still to go and more downpours forecast.

Sydney, Australia’s biggest city, has recorded its wettest year since records began 164 years ago following hours of rain on Thursday morning.

With some 86 days of 2022 still to go, total rainfall in the city had topped 2,213mm (87 inches) by Thursday afternoon, surpassing the previous record of 2,194mm (86 inches) that was set in 1950, official data showed.

More than 58mm (2 inches) of rain fell in the five hours from 9am (22:00 GMT, Wednesday), the Bureau of Meteorology’s (BoM) live data showed, with the authorities bracing for major floods in eastern Australia and more heavy downpours forecast over the next three days.

Australia’s east coast has been in the grip of the La Nina weather pattern for three years and more heavy rain is expected throughout the rest of 2022.

A La Nina phenomenon causes the temperature of the western Pacific to warm, creating better conditions for cloud and rain over eastern Australia.

Sydney’s sprawling western suburbs have been hit by serious floods three times in the past two years, and the city, along with other parts of the state of New South Wales, is bracing for more disruption.

“We know that our catchments are saturated, our dams are full, and our rivers are already swollen. So any additional rainfall, no matter how minor, is likely to exacerbate flooding circumstances,” state emergency services minister Steph Cooke said.

“Any additional rainfall has the potential to cause flash flooding.”

A woman with a baby buggy and umbrella tries to cross a rainy street in Sydney
This year’s heavy rain is the result of a persistent La Nina weather pattern over the Pacific 

Many dams and rivers are already at full capacity.

The New South Wales state government has committed to raising the height of the wall at Sydney’s Warragamba Dam, which supplies 80 percent of the city’s water, to help prevent future floods.

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