Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


Long Range Forecast For Christmas

Whether you celebrate Christmas or not, the weather on 25 December will impact the decisions of many people nationwide. If you’re planning a BBQ, heading to the beach or deciding what you will wear to work – MetService is right there alongside you.

With all the currently available information there’s a good chance that the 25th will be met with settled weather but there is a notable risk for less than ideal conditions.

MetService computer generated forecasts are now covering 25 December nationwide which can be found on metservice.com and our New Zealand Weather app.

Lewis Ferris, MetService meteorologist says, “10 days out from the big day there is still significant uncertainty revolving around the two Tropical Cyclones near Fiji and Niue so these forecasts shouldn’t be taken as ’set in stone’."

“From Sunday 20th up until the ‘big day’ is when our team of meteorologists have much more certainty about the weather systems and write detailed forecasts for our channels”

“In most cases, a 10 day forecast will alter as we get closer to the day but this should be expected as the atmosphere is an incredibly dynamic fluid which is impossible to model exactly especially when dealing with tropical cyclones, even with modern computing power,” says Ferris.

By looking at a range of deterministic and ensemble computer models we can weigh up the most impactful outcome with the most likely one. So let’s dive in:

Deterministic computer models
Starting with deterministic models – these provide the most probable single solution from one computer model and give a reasonable idea out to six days. At 10 days we are pushing the limits of their accuracy and it really shows as the models have very different solutions for New Zealand.

As an example, the model run by the European Centre for Medium Range Forecasts (ECMWF) has a large ridge of high pressure over New Zealand which would bring relatively settled conditions almost country wide. This is the ideal solution if you were planning to be outside on the 25th.

However, the model run in the US by the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) brings a low pressure system close to Northland, and while it’s not a deep low it is tied up in a lot of high humidity air and would have the ability to bring periods of heavy rain from Northland down into the Bay of Plenty. Other parts of the North Island also would be in for a dose of rain while eastern and northern parts of the South Island may see some showers. This outcome is far from an ideal beach day for most.

So how do we deal with conflicting forecasts from difference models? One approach is to look at the ensemble solutions from these two models to gauge how likely one particular outcome is.

Ensemble computer models
In a nutshell an ensemble is the same model run multiple times with slightly different starting conditions, resulting in slightly different forecasts in the future. This is useful to show how likely a particular outcome is based on how many members of the ensemble follow the same story.

Starting again with the model from ECMWF. The deterministic idea of settled weather is well represented in many ensemble members which gives extra confidence in that outcome.

By contrast, the ensemble from NCEP shows the idea of a low to the north is pretty well represented. A situation bringing settled weather is also there but is outnumbered by the wetter outcome.

“As illustrated in the examples above the uncertainty of forecasting ten days out is very real. Weather is dynamic and fast changing especially with Aotearoa’s position in the roaring forties,” says Ferris.

As always, keep up to date with the most recent forecast and know that our meteorologists will be doing a thorough analysis from 6 days out up until the big day.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Demise Of The Tokyo Olympics

As the Covid vaccines roll out around the world, the Tokyo Olympics are looming as a major test of when (and whether) something akin to global normality can return – to international travel, to global tourism, to professional sport and to mass gatherings of human beings. Currently though, it looks like a forlorn hope that Japan will be able to host the Olympics in late July. Herd immunity on any significant scale seems possible only by December 2021, at the earliest... More>>


USA: Prime Minister Congratulates President Joe Biden On His Inauguration

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has congratulated President Joe Biden on his inauguration as the 46th President of the United States of America. “I look forward to building a close relationship with President Biden and working with him on issues that matter ... More>>


New Zealand Government: Cook Islanders To Resume Travel To New Zealand

The Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern and the Prime Minister of the Cook Islands Mark Brown have announced passengers from the Cook Islands can resume quarantine-free travel into New Zealand from 21 January, enabling access to essential services such ... More>>


A New Year: No politicians at Rātana in 2021

Annual celebrations at Rātana pā will be different this year, amid a decision to hold an internal hui for church adherents only… More>>


  • RNZ - Church Defends Decision

  • Survey: Ongoing Work Dissatisfaction

    This year’s CTU work life survey shows the need for a fundamental overhaul of New Zealand’s employment framework says CTU Secretary Melissa Ansell-Bridges. The survey, which was answered by 1200 respondents, shows more than half of respondents reporting their income has not kept up with the cost of living in the last year, 52% stating their workload has got worse over the period, and 42.6% reporting lower job satisfaction.More>>

Government: New Public Housing Plan Announced

RT HON JACINDA ARDERN HON DR MEGAN WOODS The Government has released its Public Housing Plan 2021-2024 which outlines the intention of where 8,000 additional public and transitional housing places announced in Budget 2020, will go. “The Government ... More>>

Government: Pre-Departure Testing Extended To All Passengers To New Zealand

To further protect New Zealand from COVID-19, the Government is extending pre-departure testing to all passengers to New Zealand except from Australia, Antarctica and most Pacific Islands, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. More>>


Covid: Border Exception for 1000 International Students

The Government has approved an exception class for 1000 international tertiary students, degree level and above, who began their study in New Zealand but were caught offshore when border restrictions began....More>>





InfoPages News Channels