Environment   Mar 27, 2017 by Gracie Kuppenbender

How is climate change affecting our precipitation levels in northern Saskatchewan?

I think that this is a subject that is not explored often enough in northern Saskatchewan because weather we choose to accept it or not, it is a real issue and is affecting all of us. Frost free growing season is getting longer, therefore making the ice roads more dangerous, which helps to deliver many necessary resources to the northern communities in Saskatchewan. We are also experiencing drier summers due to earlier spring runoff and extra water is available in the winter and spring, but it's abundance will become more unpredictable. These drier summers also increase the probability of forest fires. A couple of years ago, our community experienced major forest fire threats and we had to evacuate. This was a very stressful time for everyone, and I can't imagine this becoming more frequent. Please feel free to comment any ideas that you may have!

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3 Comment(s)

Yuki H
Apr 10, 2017


I'm a student at Queen Margaret's School in Duncan, BC.

Our group has also been exploring the drought issue that has been affecting our community. I agree that we can not stop droughts, yet there are still ways to support water storage. Please check our blog and feel free to share any suggestions or comments!

Jessica Karafilov
Mar 28, 2017

Hey Gracie,

Great post- it does indeed sound like the difference in weather patterns is indeed affecting each of you in Northen Saskatchewan personally.

What impact does a change in the precipitation levels have on: economy? Agriculture? Leisure activities?

I'll be looking out for what you come up with!

Jessica (program assistant @ GreenLearning)

Gracie Kuppenbender
Mar 29, 2017

Thanks for your comment Jessica!

Precipitation has a big impact on our economy. Many businesses have to take into account what the weather is going to look like that day before making decisions. For example, construction workers can’t finish a project in a big snowstorm and the snow removal businesses would have to be prepared for this storm. Weather patterns can differ and can affect various parts of our economy in different ways. A long dry spell can affect agriculture negatively while also improving construction projects by keeping them on schedule.

Agriculture cannot grow without moisture in the air, so it too is very affected by our precipitation levels. But on the other end, if there is a massive downpour or massive snowstorm, the crops are still unable to grow. For our crops we require a happy medium, and with our weather fluctuating so much, it is very unpredictable and it is harder for our crops to grow.

Here in Saskatchewan, we have a lot of natural medicines and many wild berries. Many people collect these products as a form of leisure and as traditional practices. Every year, it is becoming unpredictable when these plants will grow and how much there will be. This makes it harder for people to collect these medicines and share them with others.

Mar 27, 2017

Yes, drought is a big issue for climate change and it leads to wild forest fires. I hope to read more from you when you share how communities can prevent or at least be prepared for these types of fires etc. Also, will storing and transporting water from regions of more to less abundance count? 

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