Vancouverites could be required to get used to warmer weather – similar to that experienced in San Diego – thanks to climate change, a new report Climate Projections for Metro Vancouver has suggested.
The 70-page report brings both good news and bad news and while the good news include warmer conditions that will alleviate the harshness of cold winters for those in Vancouver; decline in heating bills; increased farm output; and lush green surroundings, the bad news are much more traumatic. The report claims that people will be required to pay huge amounts for air-conditioning; will likely suffer from summer droughts and subsequent heavy rains; and might have to deal with health issues arising out of warm weather conditions.
In a matter of just three decades from now, dry and hot conditions could be the norm and by 2080, the temperatures in Vancouver could be higher than San Diego. There will be virtually no frost or snow cover at lower elevations and farmers will be able to grow a range of fruits that they were not able to before. The report notes that there will be a dramatic shift in temperatures across all four seasons. Summers will be hot, with average daytime temperatures peaking at 24.7 C in 2050 and 27 C in 2080, compared to today’s average of 21 C.
The bottom line according to the report: “Vancouver would be warmer than present-day San Diego by the 2050s.”
Some of the notable changes that Vancouverites will observer are use of bigger and stronger umbrellas; increased rainfall in autumn; increased frequency of intense rain events that could increase risk of landslides in mountain areas; warmer temperatures and increased rainfall will also erode the winter snowpack, limiting water supplies available in summer; among other things.
Fall, winter and spring are predicted to be much wetter, but summers will be much drier than normal. Summer and early fall months will see variable precipitation, with droughts occurring some years and more rain falling during others.
On a positive note, the growing season will increase from 252 days a year today to 357 days on average by the 2080s. Yields will increase substantially, but the constant heat could take a toll on plants and chances are that the yield will subsequently decline due to plants suffering from heat stress.