If you've not already noticed the low level of the Skeena River and the lack of or low level of snow in your backyard, bush and on the mountains, take a good look. El Nino has been doing its job to affect the Skeena region this winter. The Skeena River basin has just experienced the driest October to February period in 55 years of Ministry of Environment records.
You say the lack of snow and the fact you didn't have to shovel much was great. True, but look ahead. If El Nino provides a dry spring and summer, what could be the consequences for the Skeena region? Well for a start, how about fire hazards. Then there are logging delays and more unemployment, low well levels, lower quantities of hay and other crops, fishery problems due to high water temperatures, and you won't be able to water your lawn 24 hours a day. Oh, you're not suppose to do that anyways in Terrace! There might even be problems with the Run of the River hydro projects?
So what can we do? Cut back on our lawn watering, don't run the tap so much in the bathroom and kitchen, flush the toilet less........ The list goes on. Oh, how about praying for rain. We in the northwest can handle that liquid sunshine. It'll increase water levels, keep the bush moist and we'll get a water tan at the same time.
Only time will tell if El Nino is good or not to us.
For the Ministry of Environment Information Bulletin on snowpack and water supply of March 8, 2010, go:HERE
The old bridge on the Skeena River that joins Terrace and Thornhill with Copper and Thornhill Mountains in the background on March 8, 2010.