Forecasters have predicted December could be a good beach month for Wairarapa. PHOTO/FILE

MARCUS ANSELM
marcus.anselm@age.co.nz

It may be time to add a fan and a swimsuit to your Christmas list.

It’s not quite a nailed-on heatwave for Wairarapa but temperatures should be up again this summer, forecasters say.

Climate experts at Niwa expect a few good days at the beach – and power bills could be going up as residents look to cool down.

There are warnings of high winds for our region this week and MetService had issued a strong wind watch for yesterday.

Northwesterlies continue for the next 10 days. But after that, temperatures should rise through December.

Niwa released its summer climate outlook late last week.

This covers December, January, and February.

Forecasters said the eastern North Island could expect warmer-than-average weather over the period.

Niwa makes percentage forecasts of above average, near average, and below average for temperature, rainfall, soil moisture, and river flows.

“You may be running your fan more,” said Chris Brandolino, Niwa’s principal scientist for forecasting.

“If you have the privilege of air-conditioning, you may be pumping that out so the electric bill might be going up.

“Beach days may be more [frequent] than usual if you have the warmth and the dryness coinciding.”

Forecaster Ben Noll said warm seas and warmer winds would combine to raise the thermometer.

“The oceans feed on the warm air, warm air feeds back in the ocean, and that’s something that will probably continue through the month of December, if not the summer season as a whole.

“It’s very warm into the Tasman Sea. They were cooler [than average temperatures] during September and October but have rapidly turned around here during the final 10 days of November.”

Noll said the past two summers had had warm oceans contribute to hotter summer days.

“Now we’re starting to see those seas ticking up again above average. It’s something we’re keeping a close watch on.

“We certainly cannot rule another marine heatwave event out, certainly as we’ve seen one over the last two years.”

Farmers have already seen low soil moisture and this could continue, Noll said.

“Through November, it’s been quite dry in Hawke’s Bay and Wairarapa.

“Certainly, in the North Island, that’s where soil moisture is lowest, and we may not have much relief in the next few weeks over the eastern part of the North Island. But that could change.”