Weather is defined as ‘the state of the atmosphere with respect to wind, temperature, cloudiness, moisture, pressure,’ precipitation and sunshine. Climate is the ‘generalisation of weather conditions of a region… throughout the year, averaged over a series of years’ or, in other words, a region’s long-term weather pattern (Macquarie dictionary [electronic resource]: Australia’s national dictionary online, 2003).

The National Library of Australia provides access to and holds in its collection a wide range of material about weather and climate.

You can find:

  • Descriptions of weather and climate in early settlers’ and explorers’ personal accounts
  • The manuscript collections of meteorologists and climate activists
  • Indigenous Australian weather knowledges
  • Pictures of extreme weather events such as droughts and floods
  • State and Federal government and parliamentary publications and documents about weather and climate
  • Climate maps and charts
  • eResources about weather and climate
  • Ships logs and historic weather reports
  • Weather and climate data

Other institutions and government bodies also provide an array of information about weather and climate in Australia and overseas, including Data and Online Resources.

Rivers: the Lifeblood of Australia

Join Ian Hoskins, author of NLA Publishing title Rivers: The Lifeblood of Australia, and editor Katherine Crane for a discussion exploring the process behind transforming an idea into a publication and learn about Australians' relationships with their waterways. 

A map of Australia showing the rainfall distribution across the country in 1908
Commonwealth Bureau of Meteorology, Rainfall of Australia, 1909,