Wednesday, May 08, 2013

Swimming in the Gorge on May 7th 2013?!?!

The Gorge warms up very quickly because the tides move a lot of water in and out twice a day. It means that even two to three days of hot weather bring the temperature up ot 22 to 23 degrees.   With the water this warm we have been in the water twice this week already.

I have been very happy to see more swimming in the Gorge over the last few years.   It is good to see the people in this city rediscover on of the jewels of the region.     Here is a short video of Stephen and Max on the Tillicum Dock and Stephen going into the water.

 

While it is wonderful to have the water warm enough to swim in so early, we should be concerned.   We had temperatures of over 28 degrees on Sunday in Victoria.   A one off high temperature is weather, a pattern of warmer weather in successive years is a change in climate.    We set records all over southwest BC on Sunday, we had 100 year record high temperatures.   The trend seems clearer and clearer to me that we are altering the climate.

While it is wonderful to have mid summer weather at the start of May, the danger in our region is that we are not set up to deal with four months of warm or hot weather.   Our soils on the south end of Vancouver Island do not tend to run deep and consistent long hot summers with droughts will kill off many of our trees among other things.   Forest fires to the west of the city will be coming.

We are lucky in many respects in Victoria because climate change is likely to make life a bit more pleasant in the summers but we are not in isolation in the world.   In BC we are in the middle of an election and climate change is not an issue.   Other than the Greens no other party considers the issue one that matters to us.


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