Monthly Climate and Impacts Report for Hawaii - June 2013
Chris O'Connor and Dr. Pao-Shin Chu
Hawaii State Climate Office
Department of Meteorology
University of Hawaii
Honolulu, HI 96822
Precipitation and Temperature
The late winter and spring seasons brought improving trends in rainfall amounts to most of the islands of Hawai'i. However the first month of summer has taken a step backwards from the improving rainfall trends seen in spring. All of the Hawaiian islands experienced about half of the normal precipitation amounts, except for the island of Maui. Maui saw wetter than normal conditions (~135% of normal) for the second straight month in a row, and for the fifth time in the last seven months. The other islands were not so fortunate. Hilo experienced less than normal rainfall (61.19% of normal) for the fourth month in a row. Hilo has been the getting hit the hardest with precipitation deficiency, seeing less than normal rainfall ten out of the past twelve months. Honolulu experienced below average precipitation (65.38% of normal) for the first time since February. Similarly, Kauai pulled in well below average rainfall amounts, as Lihue saw 43.48% normal rainfall and below average precipitation for the second month in a row. This is in contrast to above average rainfall in Kauai the first two months of spring. Although there has been an overall state-wide decrease of precipitation in June, drought conditions in the state have not worsened. Both Oahu and Kauai have remained in complete drought free condition. While the eastern islands have experienced a slight decrease in drought over late winter and spring seasons, there are still areas of drought in this part of the state ranging from "Abnormally Dry" (D0) to "Extreme Drought" (D3) on a scale of D0-D4. The big picture: June being historically dry, the lack of rainfall this month did not affect drought conditions in the state. Thanks to a couple of healthy months of rainfall during winter and spring seasons, drought conditions have improved in the state from the strong drought seen six to eight months ago.
Temperature anomalies were very interesting this month. As mentioned above, all of the islands in the state experienced drier than normal conditions, other than the island of Maui. Temperature anomalies followed a similar pattern. All of the islands in the state experienced below average temperatures, except for Maui. In Kahului, the mean temperatures as well as mean highs and mean lows were above their respective historical averages.
The NOAA Climate Prediction Center seasonal outlook for Hawaii predicted equal chances for above, near, and below normal temperatures for the Hawaiian Islands in July 2013. They also give no indication of either above or below median precipitation for Hawaii in July 2013.
During June 2013 ENSO-neutral continued. Equatorial sea surface temperatures (SST) are near average across the western and central Pacific Ocean and below average across the eastern Pacific. ENSO-neutral is favored through the Northern Hemisphere summer 2013.
June 2013 saw some intriguing activity in terms of weather in the state of Hawai'i, as several records were set concerning precipitation and temperature. Noted above, Maui was the only island in the state with above average rainfall this month. Interestingly, most all of the rainfall came on one day. On Friday June 7th, a record 0.17 inches of rainfall fell at Kahului, sinking the old record of 0.05 inches set in 1959.
There was one temperature event which set a record this month, occurring at the Lihue airport. On Thursday 6/27/13, a record low temperature of 66 degrees was set, breaking the old record of 68 degrees set in 1985.