Record-breaking low temperatures were measured by meteorological stations across New Zealand last week, following the outburst of cold weather conditions across the country.
NIWA office reported record low temperatures have been measured in Kaitaia, Kerikeri, Warkworth, Cape Reinga, Port Taharoa in Waikato, Waione in Hawke's Bay and Ngawi in Wairarapa.
On Saturday, July 11, Kaitaia measured 0ºC (32ºF), while -0.7ºC (30.7ºF) was measured in Kerikeri and -2.3ºC (27.8ºF) in Warkworth on Sunday, July 12.
The coldest July temperature, of -4.9ºC (23.1ºF), since 1959, was measured in Te Kuiti, Sunday, July 12. The coldest July temperature, of -2.6ºC (27.3ºF), on record since 1947, was measured in Greymouth on July 9.
A cold southerly, bringing ice cold showers and snow, followed by a high pressure system, unable to trap heat, caused this outburst of cold weather, according to Niwa climate scientist Gregor Macara: "Clouds act like a blanket at night and traps heat over the Earth's surface, whereas clear skies enable enhanced night-time cooling as this heat escapes the atmosphere. This process has contributed to the severe frosts observed lately".
Featured image: Mt Ruapehu and surrounding farmland covered in snow, July 2015. Image credit: Susan Pepperell, NIWA.
Register/become a supporter
Your support is crucial for our survival. It makes this project fully self-sustainable and keeps us independent and focused on the content we love to create and share.
You'll receive your ad-free account for 20x faster browsing experience, clean interface without any distractions, ability to post comments without prior editorial check, all our desktop and mobile applications (current and upcoming) ad-free and with the full set of features available, a direct line of communication and much more. See all options.