Environmental Reporting, Ministry for the Environment and Statistics New Zealand
Rain is vital for life – it supplies the water we need to drink and to grow our food, keeps our ecosystems healthy, and supplies our electricity. New Zealand’s mountainous terrain and location in the roaring forties mean rainfall varies across the country. Changes in rainfall amount or timing can significantly affect agriculture, energy, recreation, and the environment. For example, an increase or decrease of rainfall in spring can have marked effects on crops or fish populations. More information on this dataset and how it relates to our environmental reporting indicators and topics can be found in the attached data quality pdf.
Method: NIWA interpolated seasonal rainfall totals, measured at climate station locations across the country, to create a regular 500m resolution grid of average seasonal rainfall for each year from 1981 to 2010. Missing data were infilled using Virtual Climate Station Network data (NIWA, nd). Winter is defined as the months of June, July, and August.