Top Environment Canada Weather Story

A long post to ponder on these days before the New Year.

The CBC reported today on Environment Canadas’ 2007 list of top weather stories.

The BC Winter Storms and narrowly averted flooding made the list.

However, #1 on the List was:

The “dramatic” and “schocking” loss of Arctic sea ice this year. It’s interesting from both a weather perspective, in addition to overall climate perspective. Environment Canada confirms that the current conditions in the Arctic have been produced by specific weather patterns, and these conditions will inevitably affect future weather patterns.

(emphasis added)

The unprecedented shrinkage of Arctic sea ice is a direct response to several years of favourable Arctic winds pushing old ice into the Atlantic, as well as persistent, year-round warming of the North and a dramatic transformation of its surface from a highly reflective white snow or ice to dark heat-absorbing sea water. The last two winters were the warmest on record in northern Canada, with 2005-2006 the warmest in the past 60 years. Further, 5 of the 10 warmest years in the past 60 have occurred since 2001. The last cold winter occurred nearly 15 years ago.

…. the effects of this unprecedented loss outside the Arctic is uncertain. What we do know is that ice exerts an enormous control on global climate and its sudden loss could have profound impacts on weather well beyond the Arctic’s borders.

What do people here think?

On a related noted… I’m part of the City of Port Albernis’ newly formed Climate Change Committee. If you have any suggestions or ideas at all of how we in our little town can do our part to reduce our own GHG emissions as well as fossil fuel consumption and use for generation… don’t hesitate to post your comment, send an email, or come to a meeting! The schedule will be on the City webpage shortly if it isn’t already.