Climate

Latest news

Among the multitude of New Zealand climate statistics there is one record that continues to be broken month after month.
Scientists analysing end-of-summer snowline survey photos have estimated that 13 million cubic meters of ice have been lost from just one glacier from 2016 to 2019.
This is one of the most extreme drought events for Auckland in modern times and similar to one experienced in 1993/94.
Seven weeks of lockdown has provided evidence of how pollution can vanish overnight with benefits for the environment and individuals, says NIWA air quality scientist Dr Ian Longley.

Our work

Does climate change affect the position of the Subtropical Front around New Zealand? This has important consequences for New Zealand's climate and biological productivity.
NIWA is leading a New Zealand partnership to map the South and West Pacific Ocean's seabed as part of a worldwide initiative to map the entire globe’s seafloor.

Latest videos

Glacier melt: A Time Capsule

Since 2016 enough ice has melted from the South Island’s Brewster Glacier to meet the drinking water needs of all New Zealanders for three years.

2019 New Zealand Climate Summary
NIWA climate scientist Nava Fedaeff presents the NIWA annual climate summary for New Zealand 2019.
Annual Climate Summary for 2018

New Zealand’s equal-2nd warmest year on record. Annual temperatures were above average across the majority of New Zealand, including much of the North Island as well as the western and southern South Island. See complete 2018 Annual Climate Summary details.

Variable rainfall patterns; cool in the lower South Island.
We seek a highly motivated person for a three-year PhD studentship on measurements and modelling of atmospheric greenhouse gases at the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) in New Zealand.
NIWA and MetService analyses indicate 9 to 12 named tropical cyclones (TC) could occur in the Southwest Pacific basin between November 2019 and April 2020. This expectation for tropical cyclone activity is close to normal for the region, but with elevated activity east of the International Date Line especially during the late season between February and April.
Average temperatures overall with variable rainfall patterns.
For October to December, air pressure is forecast to be lower than normal in the New Zealand region, especially south of the country. This is expected to be associated with a westerly quarter air flow anomaly, particularly during November and December. Occasional easterly quarter winds are possible during October.
Expect to hear a lot more about climate change in the news in the weeks ahead – and a lot about NIWA’s work underpinning the science that is signalling a warmer world right now and its effects in the future.
Variable temperature and rainfall patterns with frequent southwesterly winds.
7th-warmest winter on record and near normal rainfall
The central Pacific El Niño event that arrived in March 2019 has ended, giving way to ENSO neutral conditions, owing to cooling sea surface temperatures (SSTs) in the tropical Pacific and a neutral Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) during August.
NIWA meteorologists are keeping an eye on an unusual atmospheric phenomenon that is amassing in the polar stratosphere.
New Zealand’s 2nd-warmest July on record.
Despite a sharp cold snap in early August, seasonal temperatures are forecast to be near average or above average for all regions of New Zealand, owing to warmer than average coastal and regional sea surface temperatures.
An unusually dry start to winter.
We’re now halfway through 2019 and NIWA climate data from the first six months tell a dramatic story of weather and climate extremes.
A weak, central Pacific El Niño continued during June as sea surface temperatures (SSTs) remained more than 0.7˚C above average (i.e. the El Niño threshold) for the fourth consecutive month.
New Zealanders are fast becoming aware that our changing climate matters a great deal. NIWA Chief Executive John Morgan explains.

The on-going rise of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) that is fuelling climate change is also driving significant changes in the waters off our coasts.

When fire came to Pigeon Valley, Fire and Emergency came to NIWA.
NIWA is bringing together decision makers and influencers from across New Zealand this month to shape the science we need to respond to our changing climate.
Dr Sara Mikaloff-Fletcher is looking to turn the internationally accepted science of monitoring greenhouse gas emissions upside down—and the rest of the world is watching closely.
Demands for new weather and climate predictions are unprecedented as nations struggle to understand their exposure to risk from severe climatic events.
New Zealand’s 4th-warmest autumn on record.
New Zealand’s 3rd-warmest May on record
NIWA is leading a New Zealand partnership to map the South and West Pacific Ocean's seabed as part of a worldwide initiative to map the entire globe’s seafloor.
Although El Niño is forecast to continue during the upcoming three-month period, it may weaken later in 2019. Winter temperatures are forecast to be above average in the east of the South Island and to be above average or near average in all remaining regions.

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Principal Scientist - Climate

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