New Zealand is currently experiencing its warmest winter yet as long-standing winter temperature records since the 1800s have been broken throughout the country especially in the South Islands.
NIWA principal scientist Dr Brett Mullan said the current winter's average temperatures were recorded to be above the average throughout Otago and the Southland.
Despite the cold snap in New Zealand in June 19 to 21, with winds that ravaged Wellington and brought snow to the most part of the South Island, the rest of the winter was warm, according to Kiwi climate research organisation National institute of Water and Atmospheric Research.
The mean temperature in New Zealand was pegged at 9.5C which was 1.2C above the winter temperature average. The mean temperature was measured using the seven station temperature series measurement method of NIWA which started in 1909.
This year's winter in New Zealand was 0.3 degrees warmer that the previously recorded warm winter in in 1984.
The winter season should have brought lowered the temperatures but they were particularly high in Otago, Southland, coastal and inland Canterbury , the northern part of Ashburton and some parts of the North Island.
In the South Island, mean temperatures will be expected to be 1.5C higher than the average winter temperature.
New Zealand's lack of the usual Antarctic chill may be attributed to global warming based on NIWA climate scientist Brett Mullan. He said the winter in New Zealand had few southerly winds with warmer winds from the north. He also believed that the world weather was in a warming pattern.
The "warm" winter may be a boon to farmers who were still recovering from the drought. Mr Mullan said a milder weather will allow grass to grow in the farms.
In Australia, the Bureau of Meteorology has announced that the country is experiencing its hottest year yet with average temperatures of 22.9C from Sept. 2012 to Aug. 2013.
Global warming attracts pests
Aside from warm winters due to a warming pattern in global weather, a new study revealed that global warming was attracting pests to wreak havoc on crops worldwide.
Scientists from the Oxford and Exeter universities had found that as regions begin to have warmer temperatures, agricultural pests were moving towards the north and south poles. The results of the study were published in the Nature Climate Change journal.
It was estimated that about 10 to 16 per cent of crops around the world were destroyed due to disease outbreaks. Researchers have also warned that increasing global temperatures would only make the problem worse.
Dr. Dan Bebber, lead study author from the University of Exeter, said the rising temperatures could affect global food security. This might be one of the major challenges the world will have to face in the coming years.
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