2022 becomes New Zealand’s warmest year on record
The year 2022 became New Zealand’s warmest on record, knocking 2021 off the top spot, scientists said Wednesday.
2022 was also the eighth most unusually wet year on record, the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) chief scientist Chris Brandolino told a press conference.
New Zealand’s nationwide average temperature was 13.76 degrees Celsius, 1.15 degrees Celsius above the 1981-2010 annual average and surpassing 2021 by 0.2 degrees, according to the 2022 Annual Climate Summary released on Wednesday.
November 2022 was the most unusually warm month, the summary said.
The top four warmest years on record have all occurred since 2016, Brandolino said, adding La Niña was one of the primary drivers of last year’s weather patterns.
Sea surface temperatures near New Zealand also had a big impact, being above or well above average every month and resulting in a marine heatwave for most of the year, he said.
Last year, the highest air temperature was 34.7 degrees Celsius at Lake Karapiro in Waikato on Jan. 3 and the lowest was -11.6 degrees Celsius at Mt Cook Airport on July 17, according to the 2022 Annual Climate Summary.
Of the six main centers in 2022, Tauranga was the wettest, Dunedin was the driest and coolest, Auckland was the warmest, Hamilton was the sunniest, and Wellington was the least sunny, it said.