A heat wave named Lucifer

hoteuropeTemperatures across southern Europe have been so hot in recent days – climbing to more than 40 C in some areas – the heat wave has been called “Lucifer”.

Several deaths have been reported and severe weather warnings have been issued in Spain, France, Italy and the Balkan States.

Serbia’s capital Belgrade reached a scorching 39 C and train service in the southern part of the country was halted after rail tracks buckled in the extreme heat.

By contrast, northern Europe has been much cooler and wetter with the thermometer dropping as low as 4 C in the Scottish Highlands.

July 2017 – Warm and dry

Upper Salmon River, Alma, NB, 30 July 2017 (Dearing)


As the month of July progressed in Southeast New Brunswick, lawns turned brown and forests became extremely dry as temperatures soared with little rain fell. 

Greater Moncton only received one-third of its normal monthly rainfall and 15 days had no precipitation at all. 

The heat was steady throughout July with 20 days reaching 25 C or higher and four days climbing to 30 C or more. 

A brief cool down near month end lowered daytime highs to the low 20s C and brought a chilly overnight low of 6.9 C. 

JULY 2017 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)

Average HIGH 26.0 C

Average LOW 12.3 C

AVERAGE 19.2 C (about 0.4 degrees ABOVE normal)

Extreme HIGH 30.5 C (31 July)

Extreme LOW 6.9 C (23 July)

RAINFALL 30.0 mm (about 67 percent BELOW normal)

(Data courtesy Environment Canada)

Thousands evacuated in B.C. wildfires 

Wildfire north of Cache Creek, BC, 07 July 2017 (BC Transportation/Twitter)


A state of emergency is in place across British Columbia which gives government special authority over more than 230 wildfires. 

B.C. wildfire officials say weeks of hot, dry weather combined with strong winds and dry lightning have led to almost 16,000 hectares being burned so far. 

More than 7,000 residents in the Interior and Cariboo regions have been evacuated from communities like Cache Creek, Princeton, Ashcroft and 100 Mile House to be housed in Kamloops. 

Temperatures remain hot in these areas this weekend soaring above 30 C. 

Heat warnings issued in the West

Heat west

Weather watches, warnings, statements re: heat and thunderstorms, 08 July 2017 (Environment Canada)

A strong ridge of high pressure over Western Canada has pushed the thermometer into record high territory for British Columbia and Alberta.

On 07 July, dozens of communities set new maximum temperatures with the highest at 39.4 C in Warfield and 38.3 C in Nelson but the hot spot in Canada was Garden River in northern Alberta at 40.3 C.

The major cities were warm too with Calgary reaching 33 C and Edmonton 30 C.

Heat warnings have been issued for most of Alberta and parts of Saskatchewan where temperatures will be near 29 C or higher for the next few days and residents are urged to take precautions.

June 2017 – Warm and unsettled

img_7073

Ominous clouds near the Nova Scotia-New Brunswick border, 03 June 2017 (Dearing)

Thunderstorm activity was common throughout Southeast New Brunswick in June and all but ten days had at least a trace of rainfall.

But precipitation amounts were generally light in Greater Moncton except for two major rain events – 36.6 mm fell on 09 June along with a peak wind gust of 102 km/h and 21.2 mm fell on 24 June.

Temperatures were cool during the first week of the month with an overnight low dropping to the freezing point although frost was generally avoided thanks to cloudy skies.

Summer-like conditions arrived by mid-month and many daytime highs climbed well into the 20’s C and reached 30 C or higher three times.

JUNE 2017 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)

Average HIGH  22.4 C

Average LOW  9.9 C

AVERAGE 16.2 C (about 1.0 degree ABOVE normal)

Extreme HIGH  30.8 C (11 June)

Extreme LOW  0.0 C (06 June)

RAINFALL  77.8 mm (about 20 percent BELOW normal)

(Data courtesy Environment Canada)

Warmer weather ushers out cold

Brilliant pink sky over NE Moncton, 06 June 2017 (Dearing)


At least one New Brunswick location dropped to a new low on 06 June.

Environment Canada says Kouchibouguac National Park set a new cold record of -1.7 C which broke the old minimum of -1.1 C from 1958.

Greater Moncton managed to escape frost this week thanks to cloud cover although the thermometer fell to the freezing point tying a record low.

Following a brief period of very warm air, forecasters say temperatures will reach near seasonal values for the short term.

Near record cold in N.B.

A break in clouds over the Nova Scotia-New Brunswick border, 03 June 2017 (Dearing)

The last couple of days had near record lows in Greater Moncton with temperatures dropping to near the freezing point.

A low of 1.0 C at the airport on Monday was close to the 1947 record of 0.6 C while a low of 0.0 C on Tuesday tied the minimum from 1995.

Fortunately cloud cover prevented frost in most of New Brunswick but another risk is possible by early Wednesday.

Folklore suggests frost can be expected until the full moon in June which is this Friday the ninth.

Meteorological summer begins

ECsummer2017
Welcome to meteorological summer 2017 –  the months of June, July and August!

Environment Canada says Southeast New Brunswick has a 50% probability of having above normal temperatures.

Precipitation is expected to be near normal in New Brunswick but southern Nova Scotia has a 40% probability of having below normal rainfall.

May 2017 – Wet and cloudy

Trailing arbutus or Mayflower growing in Irishtown Nature Park, 20 May 2017 (Dearing)


May in Southeast New Brunswick certainly lived up to its unpredictable nature as a transitional month between winter and summer.

Overall temperatures were above normal in Greater Moncton but oddly enough some of the coolest days were in the last third of the month.

Many days were cloudy and rainfall was heavy with only seven days without at least a trace of precipitation.

By the final week, trees were in full leaf or blossom and perennials were in full bloom.

MAY 2017 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)

Average HIGH 16.1 C

Average LOW  5.1 C

AVERAGE 10.8 C (about 0.8 degrees ABOVE normal)

Extreme HIGH 30.5 C (18 May)

Extreme LOW -0.4 C (13 May)

RAINFALL 163.5 mm (about 40 percent ABOVE normal)

(Data courtesy Environment Canada)

Weather Network unveils summer forecast

2017summer
The Weather Network has released its summer 2017 forecast covering June, July and August.

A changeable summer is expected across Atlantic Canada with extended periods of above seasonal and below seasonal weather.

The southern Maritimes which includes Greater Moncton and Southeast New Brunswick and possibly into southern Newfoundland have the best chance of seeing temperatures tip to the warm side of normal.

Meanwhile, cooler than normal temperatures are expected to be more persistent across eastern Labrador and northern Newfoundland.

Near normal rainfall is expected this summer except for western and northern New Brunswick.

There is the potential for a couple of systems to tap into subtropical or tropical moisture and bring above normal rainfall to parts of the region.