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Heat turned down, mysterious haze explained

Heat across the country has been mostly turned down today as the strong nor’west flow is pushed out off land and over the Pacific Ocean.

A change in wind direction has seen temperatures fall in the South Island.  A few centres are still mild on 15 or 16 however Canterbury appears to be the coolest with Christchurch on 13 and Kaikoura currently on 11.

A warm northerly remains over the top of the South Island with Nelson on 17 and Farewell Spit on 20.

It’s warm in the North Island this afternoon.  The east coast was in the 20s earlier today and Hutt Valley was on 19 but a weak southerly has seen temperatures fall just a little.

Bay of Plenty, Waikato, Auckland and Northland are all between 18 and 20 degrees this hour.

South Islanders were yesterday wondering why the sky was so hazy. forecasters believe this was mostly due to the localised high winds creating dust and pollen in the atmosphere with perhaps a touch of dust from Australia, where the air was a few days ago.  Windy conditions recently affected south east parts of Australia causing similar skies.


Pete on 15/09/2009 7:41am

In the christchurch press today there was an artice on the haze over canterbury yesterday. The haze was determined to be dust from a dried up lake basin in australia of which gale forced winds lifted, the dust then mixed with rain clouds and made cars and houses in tasmainia and sth east aust a bright rusty red colour when it rained before the westerlies gave it a free ride to nz. Scientists in australia believe the dust contains micro-organisms that cause damage to coral reefs and rainforests and want to ”take their dust back” in sterile containers from snow fields high on the southern alps of which some dust will have settled.

Did you see this article?



WW Forecast Team on 15/09/2009 10:16am

Hi Pete, no, nobody here saw that specific article but that sounds about right.  Haze is always a very tricky thing to accurately work out immediately.  We still believe there was a significant amount of ‘localised’ haze due to the strong winds, however there was certainly an Australian element – as you pointed out – and would definitely explain the orange haze.

Thanks for the info – very interesting and much appreciated.

Evening WeatherWatch team

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