Meet New Zealand's teenage weather forecaster

New Zealanders love the weather and a Dunedin teenager is taking his passion to the next level.

Ben Hawke was inspired by a school project to start his own weather page on Facebook and he now provides detailed forecasts to fans around Otago.

"I was just like, hey this is really fun. So I did way more than I was expected to. Then I thought, 'Why don't I start a Facebook page?'" he told Newshub.

Now aged 14, his page 'Dunedin Weather, But By a Teenager' is building a big reputation for accurate forecasts of local weather events.

Weather stations installed at the front and back of the house are key to his forecasts, along with analysing data from the MetService and global weather models.

It's a big responsibility keeping his followers updated.

"Because, I don't know, they're just like, 'Wow this kid isn't playing Fortnite and stuff, he's not a burden to society as much'," Ben said. 

The teenager appeared on the MetService's radar after featuring in an article for the School Journal.

MetService meteorologist Lisa Murray invited him up to Wellington to meet the team and see their forecast room.

"Ben is really passionate about the weather and really enthusiastic, which we love. We're always trying to encourage people in those stem subjects," Ms Murray said.

"We showed him some of the tools that we use, some extra guidance that he didn't know existed so that he could better his forecasting himself."

Ben's now considering a career in weather - although he also has an interest in politics.

Both will take a back seat these holidays, with Ben planning to enjoy the "above average temperatures" he's forecasting for the summer.


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