McGill Researchers Predict A Hotter Weather Than Expected in Canada’s Western Provinces

People that live in the western provinces of Canada will face hotter temperatures than it was previously expected. McGill University found that in the following decades, the westerners will see more warming because of the climate change.

The findings have recently appeared in Geophysical Research Letters.

Based on historical data which focuses on solar energy and the levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, the researchers have looked into how temperature changed since 1880 in small areas. The lead author of the study, Shaun Lovejoy explains their results:

“Some areas, especially northern areas, are more sensitive than others. To get the future, we assumed that the sensitivity is essentially going to be the same.”

The modeling delivered by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) said that cities like Alberta would become 0.8 C warmer in the next three decades. On the other hand, Lovejoy’s results show a bigger increase:

“According to us, it will actually be about 1.4 degrees warmer. So the warming has been underestimated there by about 0.6 degrees, up to 2050.”

“That’s a fairly significant bump.”

With the climate change provoked by humans, the region is already 1 C warmer, so in total, Lovejoy says it’s going to be 2.4 C overall.

An Additional 1 or 2 Degrees – Can It Impact Us?

You might argue that it’s not that big of a deal to have one or two more degrees, but ecosystems and weather patterns are extremely sensitive. The Paris Agreement limited the increase of global temperature until the end of our century to 1.5 – 2 C.

The winter will also get warmer, explains Lovejoy:

“A lot of the discrepancy between our projection and the usual method … in high latitudes, is in the winter. So that might be one of the things that people might notice the most, is particularly warmer winters.”

Parts or Canada like Quebec and Ontario will stay cooler, shows the McGill model prediction.

Researchers also believe that the computer modeling that IPCC used is wrong and 39% of the predictions for the entire globe are wrong – either overestimating or underestimating the future temperatures. They want to clear all misunderstandings and this is what Lovejoy aims to do with the McGill model:

“Essentially, policies are no longer linked to targets. So that’s what I’m calling sort of an uncertainty crisis. The advantage of our technique is that it can significantly reduce the uncertainty levels. We’ve got a problem here which is so important for the future of civilization that it really requires many approaches and many different ways of doing things.”

Rex Austin

Rex Austinwas born and raised in Thunder Bay Ontario on the shores of Lake Superior. Apart from running his own podcast (Ice Fishing And Other “Cool” Things), he spends his time canoeing and backpacking in Northern Ontario.. As a journalist Rex has published stories for Global News (Thunder Bay) we well as Buzz Feed and Joystiq. As a contributor to Great Lakes Ledger, Rex most covers science and health stories. Contact Rexhere

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