Climate change is here. Already in July eastern Canada has suffered one of the worst natural disasters in Canadian history in the form of a record-breaking heatwave and is preparing for a hurricane charging toward the Maritimes.
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In the course of just two weeks, Canadians have experienced both fifty degree heat and hail storms. Such capricious weather is only going to become more common.
Today, The Weather Networkpublished a new, extensive look at Canada's climate future. Some changes are closer than you may think. High temperatures and extreme storms will alter the Canadian landscape by 2030.
We all know the basics of climate change. But here are some unexpected consequences Canadians should expect within the next ten years:
Commutes are going to get much, much worse
Canadians can expect more extreme weather year-round within the next decade. Hurricanes in the summer and ice storms in the winter will put a tremendous strain on Canada's already aging public infrastructure. As bridges fall and roads wash away, the number of available routes between suburban areas and their downtown cores will diminish. That means that commutes will be longer and slower, and road construction will be nonstop. We'll also have to swerve around more potholes, which will likely mean more accidents.
The cost of food will skyrocket
Not just because of Trump's tariffs. As storms destroy crops and droughts ruin the fertile land that covers much of the Canadian prairies, food will become more scarce and prices will rise dramatically. Forest fires will also endanger the food supply. With an expected world population of ten billion by 2050, there will be more demand for food than ever.
To meet demand, farmers will plant more corn. According to The Weather Network, corn is a more robust and heat-tolerant crop than wheat. As corn replaces wheat in Canadian fields, it may be the one item whose price decreases. We can also expect more products derived from corn.
Deadly power outages
Extreme weather is only half the worry. Scorching temperatures and extreme ice storms will force Canadians to plug in more cooling appliances in the summer and crank up the heat in the winter. That will overload the Canadian power grid. Over 70 people died in last week's heat wave in Quebec. A lack of electricity will multiply fatalities.
Skiing is going to be more expensive
The ski season will shorten because of rising temperatures. To remain operational and pay for more snow-making machines, ski resorts will have to raise prices. The favourite Canadian winter sport may become a luxury for the rich.
An invasion of animals from the United States
The current stable distribution of climate zones between Canada and the United States will become volatile as temperatures climb. As trees retreat north, Canadian pines will give way to American deciduous forests that will bring with them hundreds of species. The invasion of new animals in the Canadian ecosystem will likely lead to mass extinctions when local creatures suddenly have to vie for resources with new competitors.
Swarms of mosquitos in Canadian skies
Mosquitos thrive in warm, humid areas. Southern Canada will become an ideal habitat for the disease-carrying insects. Outbreaks of Lyme disease and West Nile virus, according to The Weather Network, will plague huge portions of the Canadian population.
Extreme weather and temperatures will force officials to more frequently postpone or cancel some of Canada's most popular events. This year, extreme heat in Montreal forced the cancellation of some Canada Day celebratory activities. Unless major events can host thousands of people indoors, revellers should plan ahead for cancellations.