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Rain not enough to seriously impact droughts – but more downpours are coming (+7 high res Rain Maps)

Rain fell overnight and this morning in dry drought zones of the upper North Island but the rain failed to reverse the drought – or even make a dent in the over-year-long rainfall deficit these regions are now in. says rainfall totals were fairly “miserable” for some, with less than 10 to 20mm falling.

Head forecaster Philip Duncan says to make a real difference around 200mm of rain would be needed within one month – around double the normal. “We’d need to see a couple of big slow moving rain events that bring at least double the monthly total to actually start balancing the books” says head forecaster Philip Duncan “and even then it would still leave you in a significant annual deficit”.

Rain helps in two ways – 1) by directly falling on the earth and off roofs and into water tanks, and 2) By draining deep into the ground and helping underground aquifers. The rain overnight and this morning mostly only helped in the first way and won’t have much long term affect deeper down.

For Auckland’s mismanaged water crisis it puts more pressure on leaders with limited rain falling in the catchment areas over the past 24 hours. All eyes will be on these potentially slow moving downpours this weekend – but the hit and miss nature of them makes it more frustrating for those trying to manage their way out of this foreseeable water shortage crisis in our largest city.

More rain is possible this weekend and/or early next week in the form of sub-tropical downpours. It’s still hit and miss like we just saw, but the downpours may double or triple totals for some on what fell over the past 24 hours.

To drill down locally for rainfall totals specifically where you live, visit

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