By Barb McKay
Kincardine can expect to see warmer than average temperatures this month and possibly into October, according to an Environment Canada climatologist.
David Phillips told The Independent last week that while early fall temperatures won’t be equivalent to July heat, they will be higher than normal.
“What we see ahead is more of the summer,” he said. “I think we have another month. My sense is there is a lot of heat left in the lake and the land and it will be extracted in the atmosphere.”
Phillips said Environment Canada was accurate in its predictions for a normal spring and summer this year,
so he is feeling confident that predictions for autumn will be correct as well. As well, because of normal-range temperatures and adequate precipitation the autumn leaves should be vibrant.
“The colour change season should be glorious,” Phillips said. “The trees have been well watered and they haven’t had the heat to stress them.”
While this summer hasn’t been ideal for sipping cold drinks on the patio, it has actually been quite average, Phillips said.
“In many ways it has been a real contrast to last year. It has been comfortably lukewarm. Last year was one of the warmest summers on record, but this year has actually been normal.”
May was a little warmer than normal, he noted, but August was slightly cooler. Overall, from May to August the average temperature (17.1 degree Celsius) was lower by only one degree Celsius from last summer over the same time period.
On the upside, “we’ve been saving money on air conditioning,” Phillips said, and added, “The long weekends have been fairly good, and we live for the weekends.”
Phillips said he understands how hotter summers with more sunshine can be important.
“I spent a lot of my summers in Kincardine as a young parent, so I know how important the weather is to the local economy,” he said.
But on the other hand, farmers who suffered through last year’s sweltering, dry summer are likely happy to see cooler temperatures and a little more rain this year. Philips said there has been about five per cent more precipitation this summer than the seasonal average.
“I think the crops will benefit from it,” he said.
In addition, air quality has been better with no smog days, compared to 18 smog days last year.