|After October rains had eased
Zealand's severe drought, seven weeks of very little rainfall in
Auckland, Coromandel, Bay of Plenty, the east of the North Island,
Marlborough and eastern Canterbury has seen the drought reappear. December
totals in Northland and Whakatane were lowest recorded. The National
of Water and Atmosphere (NIWA), notes that the onset of drought has
("Drought now affecting the north and east," NIWA Press Release, 21 December 1994; "National Climate Summary - 1994," NIWA, 9 January 1995).
Note: In their 1994 climate summary, NIWA state that "1994 was an extreme year for climate in New Zealand." In the eastern Northland and Hawke's Bay, 1994 was the driest year since records began late last century and it was also generally warmer than in 1992 and 1993. Both of these years were cold in New Zealand, the result of El Nino (which brings cold weather to New Zealand) and the eruption of Mt Pinatubo, however by 1994 the effects of the volcano had almost worn off, resulting in the warmer weather. NIWA's Jim Salinger notes that, "The El Nino pattern was one of the main reasons for last years' climate extremes. However, it must be remembered there are many factors that can cause our climate to vary." The year also recorded more frequent - the most since 1917 - westerly and south westerly winds.
- Driest year on record in the
northern and eastern
regions of the North Island.
GREENPEACE Climate Impacts Database