Future climate projections for rainfall and temperature are displayed as a series of maps. The data behind these projections comes from the Climate Services for Agriculture website, developed by the CSIRO and Bureau of Meteorology, to 'help farmers and communities plan for the impacts of climate variability'.
Future projections are developed using Global Climate Models (GCMs) that couple various components of the Earth's systems, including atmospheric processes, land processes, ocean temperatures and circulation, sea-ice, aerosol feedbacks and carbon cycle feedbacks. By using prescribed scenarios of greenhouse gas emissions, it is possible to estimate how quickly the Earth system will warm and model varying responses to this warming by different Earth system components (e.g. melting sea ice).
It is important to note that projections are not forecasts. They do not provide a prediction of exactly what will happen by a particular date. Instead, they draw on the best available information to indicate how the climate is likely to change based on different scenarios of human activity
Future climate projections are derived from eight GCMs from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5) pool of models and is represented under two emissions scenarios, RCP 4.5 and 8.5. Greenhouse gas emissions or Representative Concentration Pathways, developed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (RCP 4.5) assume that greenhouse gas emissions are reduced substantially by end of the century, but not enough to stop continued warming. Under RCP 4.5 adaptation will become more difficult over time. High emissions (RCP 8.5) assume rapid increases in greenhouse gases to continue towards the end of the century. Under RCP 8.5 some systems are unlikely to be able to adapt to the large changes in climate.
Maps for break of season (15 mm of rainfall over 3 days from 25 April) for 1975-1999 and 2000-2020 and maps for frost in August-October for 1975-1999 and 2000-2021.
Maps for April to October rainfall, November to March rainfall and days above 32ºC in August and November show past historical data from 1961-1990, current data from 1991-2020, future climate projections for 2030 and 2050 under the two greenhouse gas emissions RCP 4.5 and 8.5.
Maps for annual (January-December), autumn (March-May), winter (June-August) and spring (September-November) rainfall show past historical data from 1961-1990, current data from 1991-2020, future climate projections for 2030, 2050 and 2070 under the two greenhouse gas emissions RCP 4.5 and 8.5.