The upside to climate change

Prairie farmers can play a vital role in feeding the world if temperatures rise, says a researcher

Prairie farmers are going to have to adapt to climate change because they are going to face more of it than most of the rest of the world.

However, they should also look at the coming rise in temperatures as an opportunity to play a more vital role in feeding the world of 2050, says a University of Winnipeg climate researcher.

“There’s a very good argument that the Canadian Prairies will actually be an important generator of food for the world, more than it already is, because a lot of other areas are going to be experiencing extreme heat and other conditions,” said Ian Mauro, a geography professor who is part of the Prairie Climate Centre in Winnipeg.

“This stuff is risky, but we can be resilient.”

Mauro told farmers at Keystone Agricultural Producers’ annual meeting Jan. 25 that the Canadian Prairies will see even more extreme temperature increases than the world average because they are located in the centre of a continent and not moderated by oceans. Instead of the 2C average increase in temperatures forecast for the planet, the Prairies will see 3.4 C, according to forecasting models.

That will have many impacts. Beyond just the average increase, it will also produce many more days of scorching temperatures, Mauro said.

There are now only 10 to 11 days of higher than 30 C per year, but this could increase to 50 to 54 by 2050-80.

“We’re going to jump to almost two months of plus-30,” he said.

That will be bad for many crops and cropping systems, but farmers need to learn to adapt so that they can take advantage of opportunities that might arise.

“Other varieties coming in, getting ahead of the curve, being ready for it,” is what farmers should focus on, Mauro said.

“There are opportunities here, and farmers here know how to maximize opportunities.”

However, whether farmers face problems or opportunities, they need to start thinking about how they are going to adapt because major changes are coming.

“We’re going to see more warming,” said Mauro.

“We will actually be hotter here (than elsewhere), faster.”

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  • It’s all right to be a Redneck

    Rural Canada should stop producing food for city people. City people in Canada do nothing for rural folks except call them names. City people are the most useless human beings on earth, all they do is breed, complain, and leech resources.

  • PortageMain

    It amazes me that people who can’t predict the weather the day after tomorrow with any accuracy have no trouble telling us what the climate is going to be like in 30 years

  • Kissing optional

    While it is true that in any global warming scenario by reputable climate scientists project a greater overall temperature increase affecting the prairies, those same scientists claim that there will also be a greater swing in extreme weather events to accompany the warming.
    Two feet of snow in the beginning of October, like we just experienced is just the start of such extremes
    Extreme droughts, floods, heat waves and so on isn’t necessarily going to be a boon for any agricultural enterprise.

    • Harold

      Climate changes are measured in increments of a 15 periods. Weather is everything in-between. It is not unusual to experience good and bad seasons within a 15 year period. Many factors including- both solar and earth/ocean- effect weather changes. Any single-year period (weather) is not evidence (signal) of a climate change. Between 0 and fifteen, thirty, sixty years, and so forth, is each a signal of climate change. The earth has undergone many heating and cooling climate changes in its history, and without the cause attributed to Co2. (Industrial age) These facts are obvious; they have been measured; show a natural occurrence; regardless of human involvement. Moreover, Co2 is NOT a poison; it is the building blocks of all living. All life on this planet would cease to exist if Co2 were eliminated. The facts relating to Co2 have been kept from the public and kept unpublished by the news media, to serve a government and corporate multi-national agenda. “Greenhouse” and climate change are a natural occurrence, which can be demonstrated throughout time and history. (unless you want to TAX) The trouble with scientific models is that they are only as good as the data entered. A scientific model has no future measurements and therefore is never proven regardless of scientific agreement. In other words, a line on a model can run “sky high” when true measurements do not alter its course. The Identical is seen nightly on television when models are used to predict the future weather based upon now time facts. Even though weathermen share a general consensus about the future, seldom are they accurate because of one major flaw, and that is; future measures of fact are missing from their present day models. Models are interesting, but they are Junk-Science. When a model is used for political Tax “perp”-“posing”, then it has fallen off the rails of Science altogether. Further, funding is eliminated when the political agenda of “climate change” cannot be met. More-so, the 97% scientific consensus of climate change was a total fabrication. In fact; it was more like 2%. 10,257 questionnaire emails were sent by a collage grad, and from 3,146 returns, 75 or 77 were hand-picked, and of those 77, all but 2 answered yes. The 97% (“true”) fiction is intended to be used to dismiss the many contrary science claims. It works well. Climate hoax- forbidden knowledge. Don’t look.

  • Harold

    The one thing that “post hole diggers” have to their credit is a measurable evidence of fact. (history) It is the one who thinks that they can factually predict the tree-rings of the tree thirty years from now, is the one who is suffering from illusion. (and followers)
    There are many educated people, but unfortunately, they only consider themselves to be intelligent if they follow government dictate, majority opinion, and every expert with a title. Caged/farm animals are participating in the same form of governance as is ours, which is probably why most people now believe that animal’s can think.