• Call Agent (24 Hours): 604.687.3733
  • Check Out Our New Drone Photography Services! Click here.

Drought in the Prairies

Abnormally dry weather conditions throughout Western Canada has soil conditions deteriorating in the Prairies. British Columbia’s southern interior, North and coastal regions have been experiencing drought-like conditions as the province enters ‘wild-fire season.’ Conditions don’t look anymore promising for provinces to the East either. The National Agroclimate Information Service in their Canadian Drought Monitor  states: “deteriorating soil moisture conditions and below normal precipitation in the Prairie region led to worsening drought conditions. As a result of this there are increased concerns for feed supply in the growing season.”

A lack of moisture and higher than traditional temperatures for the start of the 2019 growing season could result in less than optimal development for seeds in the coming months. The Western Producer reports that precipitation numbers for this season when compared with last are “below normal in almost all of Western Canada. For a big chunk of central Saskatchewan precipitation has been less than 40 percent of normal. This is surrounded by an even bigger area that’s between 40 and 60 percent.”

The poor weather conditions coupled with rocky relationships with the Chinese means that some Canadian farmers are turning to government aid for assistance. AgriStability, a program designed to “manage risks and financial losses due to poor yields, low commodity process, rising input costs, or market disruptions” provides some assistance. The Financial Post reports that “payments from AgriStability have jumped 37 per cent year over year” according to a federal agriculture department spokesman with the program deadline already extended from April 30 to July 2.

Further discussions regarding the possible implementation of the AgriRecovery framework are ongoing. The purpose of which is to alleviate the “extraordinary costs producers must take on to recover from disasters. Extraordinary costs are costs which producers would not incur under normal circumstances, but which are necessary to mitigate the impacts of a disaster and/or resume farming operations as quickly as possible following a disaster.” First, the individual Province must request an assessment by the Federal government before the 60-40 (federal – provincial) cost share is approved which has yet to happen.