2016 warmer than usual

Records for 2016 show that temperatures on average throughout New Zealand were 0.8 degrees above normal. 2016 was the warmest year since records began in 1909. May 2016 was the warmest May since records began.

The highest number of sunshine hours were recorded in Richmond, Nelson with 2840 sunshine hours in the year. Blenheim was the second sunniest place with 2582 sunshine hours and Takaka in Golden Bay the third sunniest with 2534 sunshine hours.

The last two years have been a time of drought for parts of New Zealand especially the east coast south of Napier and north of Christchurch. This has been difficult for farmers.

On the other hand, the West Coast of the South Island, which has a high rainfall, had more rain than usual. Milford Sound which is well known for its very high rainfall had 9259mm of rain, the highest rainfall since records began in 1929. One advantage of this high rainfall for tourists to Milford Sound is that they can admire the many waterfalls on the rock face around the Sound.

See the NIWA website for more details (NIWA is National Institute of Water and Atmosphere).

Vocabulary

• drought – almost no rain, the soil is very dry (note the pronunciation)
• Sound – fiord, a long narrow arm of the sea with high cliffs on each side
• face of a cliff or rock wall – the part of the cliff or rock you can see

Activities

1. Listen for the numbers and years, and see if you can write them down accurately.
2. Can you use superlatives correctly? E.g. This was the hardest / longest / most difficult / second highest (Don’t forget ‘the’). You can often use ‘ever’ with superlatives e.g. the hottest day I have ever experienced.






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