British Columbia under extreme forest fire hazard


B. McPherson
Sun at 11:30 filtered through smoke and ash
There are those who will say our climate isn’t changing, or if it is, it’s nothing to do with human activity. I’m not a climatologist, but I am an observer. I’ve noticed some things.
On the Vancouver Island we usually have two distinct climatic types. The west coast gets generous(some would say to a fault) rainfall and supports true temperate rainforests. The east coast tends to drier. Down the spine of the island is a ridge of mountains which are usually snow covered until late May.

One thing I’ve noticed is that the mountains got little snow last winter. A ski hill that was used as a practise site during the 2010 Olympics never truly opened due to lack of snow. The lowlands where I live had no snow at all. We had one week of relatively cold weather – we had light frost in the morning.

May was the driest May since records were kept. June was the driest in 50 years. July has started out hot and dry. That alone does not denote climate change. Science looks for patterns and we have a pattern that is a gradual warming and drying.

The forest fire hazard is deemed extreme. Last week, a few kilometres from where I live, a small forest fire broke out. It was human caused albeit an accident. A farmer was working his field when the fire broke out. It was quickly contained and knocked down. There are currently four fires burning on Vancouver Island. A total of eight, all above 10 hectares are currently burning in the Coastal region.

This morning I woke up to a weird yellow light. There was no sun, yet no rain has been predicted. Smoke and ash from a large fire on the BC mainland is drifting west over Vancouver Island. The photo above is of the sun near noon.

No rain is predicted in the weather forecasts.


No water, no life

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