FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — Meteorologists with The Weather Network are forecasting that it will be a very pleasant summer here in the B.C. Peace Region.
Meteorologist Kelly Sonnenburg with The Weather Network says that over the next three months, temperatures in the Peace and across the province as a whole will be above normal. Sonnenburg says that a ridge of high pressure is expected to build over the province, a similar pattern that was last seen in 2014 and 2015, when several temperature records were broken across the region. She explained that the ridge of high pressure won’t be as persistent this summer as it was two and three years ago, and that temperatures should be very pleasant without being too hot.
Precipitation-wise, Sonnenburg says that the Peace Region should see near-normal precipitation, in contrast to the past year, when precipitation levels were above normal. However, according to Chief Meteorologist Chris Scott, precipitation amounts could also be higher in spots, as the B.C. Interior is forecast to see increased thunderstorm activity. Sonnenburg says that saturated soils from a wet Spring will help to fuel that increase in thunderstorms due to convective heating that causes most precipitation during the summer months.
According to Sonnenburg, this summer is also shaping up to be difficult for forecasters to compare to past years due to the unique climate pattern that has emerged this year. She says that after the exceptionally strong El Niño in 2014 and 2015, last year saw a weak La Niña develop in the South Pacific. However, this year a weak El Niño has once again developed, which will make for a very pleasant summer in our part of the country, but that the weather will also be variable.
Sonnenburg added that the precipitation amounts that are forecast mean that the wildfire situation in B.C. is looking good for the first half of the summer, but that things could be quite dry in the second half of the season.