RECENT LOCATIONS

Close
Add a location
Edit your saved locations

Drastic decline in snowfall projected


Parts of the United States could see less than half their current average annual snowfall.
Parts of the United States could see less than half their current average annual snowfall.

Staff writers

March 3, 2013 — New climate models suggest annual snowfall in parts of North America could be halved over the next 70 years.

Snowfall levels in north America are expected to drastically drop. Photo: Leah Sedgewick.
Snowfall levels in north America are expected to drastically drop. Photo: Leah Sedgewick.

Snow-lovers in North America are in for a disappointing few decades.

Researchers say climate change is now expected to lead to drastic reductions in annual snowfall rates over the next seventy years -- falling by half in a few extreme cases.

"The vast majority of the U.S. experiences snowfall loss, with the greatest percentages occurring in the south, along the eastern coast, and the Pacific Northwest," say the authors of the report, which was released by the U.S. Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

In Canada, southern Ontario and parts of the Atlantic Coast will see fewer snow, but B.C.'s lower mainland will see an even more drastic reduction.

The U.S. Great Plains and Canadian Prairies will see relatively less snowfall loss.

Only the polar regions and high mountain peaks of the continent will see more snowfall.

But the gradual and drastic loss is bad news for farmers. Many Agricultural areas rely at least in part on snowmelt as a water source.

The summer of 2012 already saw record drought conditions across many parts of the continent, with more than half of U.S. counties in a drought-related state of emergency at one time.

The study was published last month in the Journal of Climate.

Log in or Sign up to submit a comment.




Comments





Take your weather with you, no matter where you go.

Get instant forecasts and alerts, right on your computer.

  • RSS & Data
Add weather updates to your website or RSS reader.