New study sets stage for climate action

Penticton Herald – February 26, 2020

The recent release of “Climate Projections for the Okanagan Region” has been reported in Valley media over the last couple of weeks. The published work is a collaboration between the three Okanagan regional districts and Pinna Sustainability, in partnership with Natural Resources Canada and the Okanagan Basin Water Board, and with participation from almost 90 stakeholders in the region.

The report examines a number of possible future scenarios based on historic and projected greenhouse gas emissions to predict climate change in the 2050s and 2080s.

In short, we can expect warmer temperatures year-round, with summers getting considerably hotter.

We can also expect increased precipitation throughout the year, except in summer, and rain events will be more severe.

Further, the growing season will increase from about 5 1/2 months to almost seven months by the 2050s, and almost eight months by the 2080s.

This longer growing season is likely to bring some challenges, particularly in terms of water over the drier summer months.

It is important to note that, as always, weather will vary annually and seasonally: Some years will have more days above 30 C than others—some years will record much more rainfall.

The report provides climate projections, meaning trends over a 30-year period.

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