Why most Victorians hate the heat

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Why most Victorians hate the heat

Post  droughtbreaker on Thu Nov 19, 2009 8:07 pm

Re posting this in here. Just an explanation from a life long Victorian as to why our new climate of extreme dry and heatwaves is not tolerated by the majority here, (like perhaps it is in places like Arizona or Spain).

From my experience, people on here don't 'hate' heat per se. If it is within the boundaries of what has happened before and what is considered statistically normal then it is one of the benefits of living in the mid latitudes on the edge of a vast continent in that you get your fair share of heat and sun, unlike high latitude countries like those in Northern Europe, particularly island countries with a large maritime influence on climate like the British Isles (i.e. UK and Ireland) that can struggle to get a decent period of warm sunny weather in summer that drives many of the people there nuts. The South Island of NZ also falls into this category, higher latitude than here and maritime influence dominant, and also Tasmania to an extent.

The reason we are all 'into' the rain and cold side of things now is because our climate has dramatically turned in the last 12 years (but especially the last 6 years), to an extreme one with intense dry and heat at sporadic times of the year. Not only do we get hotter days than ever before during these heatwaves but they last many times longer than in the past.

When I was growing up in the 80s and 90s, it was very unusual to have more than a few days in a row above 35C in Melbourne full stop (let alone in November) and not every year would see a 40C in Melbourne. We would get long cool spells of weather interspersed with the odd burst of 30C plus heat and the occasional day in the mid to high 30s. Summer was usually a mixed bag with some months very dry and warm and others very wet and humid with tropical influence. Other months would be generally dry but with regular modest rainfall events. One thing I can say is that, on average, we didn't have extreme summers at all and the Melbourne average of around 26C for the warmest months confirms this. We may have had fairly intense heatwaves for a day or two or three but this was balanced out by much milder weather for longer spells than the heat.

Our climate now is absolutely ridiculous and doesn't even vaguely resemble southern Victorian weather of the past. It is almost like we've been picked up and relocated over the ranges into northern VIC/southern NSW. The damage this is causing to our environment and quality of life down here is potentially enormous and is well and truly happening already and has for some years. You know it is getting bad when you need to build a desal plant for basic water needs (like Dubai etc.).

Of course there are many places in the state, generally north of the ranges and only a couple of hours drive away that are intensely hot in summer and always have been. I'm talking places like Wangaratta and that area around the NE and of course further out towards Mildura in the NW. These places average low 30s in Summer and get weeks at a time between 30C-35C and days above 40C every year. That's not us though that's them.

To wish for intense heat of the kind we have been experiencing for most of this month is to wish for the destruction of our environment and rapid deterioration of our quality of life. No wonder people on here are so desperate for rain and cooler weather Exclamation Exclamation

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Re: Why most Victorians hate the heat

Post  hillybilly on Fri Nov 20, 2009 4:31 am

Andrew I think you give people to much credit. If you think about it Melbourne's climate is now fantastic for those things people aspire to doing - BBQs with mates, weekends down the coast, brunch etc. The cold, wet, windy weather and the wild swings we once got have gone. This is one of the reasons I bought a beach shack - felt you could actually have a great time in summer down the beach now (and also avoid the carbon footprint that goes with chasing beaches interstate). The coastal towns are going "off" with really solid holiday rentals - you struggle to get a house over summer and many of the holiday periods.

As a taxi driver said to me this week (arguing that climate change was a hoax) we now get more "nothing weather". Those days with not much cloud, not much wind, and temperatures which are just about right for humans.

Of course, those who recognise this is part of a pattern and if it continues will end in Victoria becoming the desert state don't much like where our climate is going and every hot day, dust storm, fire storm, dry month dry year is just another reminder...

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Re: Why most Victorians hate the heat

Post  Anthony Violi on Fri Nov 20, 2009 6:25 am

So most Victorians hate the heat because of the heatwaves becoming more often?? Nonsense. You either hate it or you don't.

I have hated the heat from the day I was born...1982/83 summer we slept outside till 2 am due to the ridiculous heat..you can try to blame that on global warming to if you like..it was just as hot just as long that year.

I love rain, storms, floods, gales, tornadoes, cyclones hailstorms and anything except that ridiculously boring blue sky...you don't join up to weather forums to discuss how good the sky looks with no clouds in it?? Some people like the heat...good for them. I'm not one of them...maybe someone can start a blue sky weather forum...be a happening site.
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