Cold winter predicted

  • Nov. 8, 2010 6:00 a.m.

It’s been a stormy fall, but islanders should prepare for a cold and snowy winter. That’s the word from Environment Canada meteorologist Doug Lundquist, who says we should start to feel the effects of the “La Nina” weather phenomenon in December. La Nina, which has already developed in the southern Pacific, is associated with colder than normal ocean temperatures and brings wetter and cooler weather to the northwest coast, he said. It’s the opposite of El Nino, which is associated with warmer than normal ocean temperatures. The intense storms we experienced in September and October do not mean we will have an unusually stormy or windy winter season, Mr. Lundquist said. “It’s typical to get storms in October and November on the west coast, it’s our storm season,” he said. “What happened there doesn’t necessarily predict what the winter will be like.” La Nina should bring colder weather, although Mr. Lundquist added that the general global warming trend we’ve been experiencing lately could balance out that effect. In any case, he said, islanders will definitely find this winter colder than last year’s extremely mild season. “For December, January and February, overall, I think we’ll have near average to below temperatures,” he said. “It will be wetter and stormier in southern Haida Gwaii… The north won’t be quite so stormy, but it will be colder.”