According to weather data compiled by Weatherlogics July was hot and dry in Saskatchewan.
Weatherlogics utilizes data from government weather stations, then compiles, and analyzes it.
The president and chief scientist at Weatherlogics, Scott Kehler, said Hudson Bay, Last Mountain, and Wynyard had the hottest July ever recorded in those areas, and it is causing issues for crops.
“When you’re getting into the top one or two record years for heat or dryness, especially when they’re happening at the same time, it really highlights the drought situation that farmers are facing right now,” he stated in an interview.
This year, Melfort, Nipawin, Pilger and Prince Albert had the driest July ever recorded respectively.
Though locals have been experiencing the heat this summer, Kehler claims winters are where the warming trend is more obvious.
“The last few years, have definitely been warmer years on the prairies in summer. But if we look back over longer periods of time, like 30, 50 or 100 years, those trends aren’t quite as obvious.”
“We’re still not entirely sure what all the trends might be for future prairie [summers].”
One change that has occurred over time is that grasslands have become crops in Saskatchewan. Kehler noted this could result in a different thunderstorm pattern. Grasslands give off humidity that is more consistent for a longer period, while crops produce more dramatic levels for a shorter period, he stated.
He said, “However, there’s also other types of weather patterns that produce rain on the prairies too. Just general weather systems, which tend to go through cycles, you know, 10 to 20 years … of wetter weather from low-pressure systems and then 10 or 20 years of drier weather.”
“And it seems now we’re at least a few years in some areas even longer into this drier type of weather, which has created drought conditions in many parts of the prairies.”