We've had our driest summer in eight years
Published 03/09/2014 | 10:38
Ireland has enjoyed the driest summer in eight years, according to Met Eireann.
The weather forecast service yesterday reported that the arid conditions largely came about because of a spell of high pressure over the country in June.
The Poulter Index is a method of rating the summer weather from June to August using a formula based on mean temperature, rainfall and sunshine for selected stations.
The higher the index, the better the summer weather.
This year the index was above average, with the summer considered to be the 11th best in the last half-century.
Sunshine totals were near or above average with percentage of long-term average values ranging from 96pc at Knock Airport to 173pc at Belmullet.
Met Eireann's stations at Shannon Airport and in Valentia, Co Kerry, reported 13 days of near-dry conditions and only 60pc of their usual average rainfall for June.
Climatologist at Met Eireann Ruth Coughlan said that this fell two days short of being declared a drought.
"Drought conditions are normally declared when there are 15 or more consecutive days with 0.2 mm or less of rainfall," she said.
"Shannon Airport recorded just over half of its normal July rainfall with 54pc."
Cooler than normal conditions were reported as monthly temperatures were all below average for the time of year.