'Rock-and-rolling' weather, more mosquitoes this summer: Phillips
Published Thursday, June 1, 2017 9:16AM EDT Last Updated Thursday, June 1, 2017 9:07PM EDT
Summer 2017 is likely to usher in slightly above-normal temperatures, along with fewer wildfires and more mosquitoes, according to Dave Phillips of Environment Canada.
Phillips says this summer won't be as warm as last year, but the weather will warm up "when it counts," in late June and into July and August.
"Generally speaking, it looks pretty positive," Phillips, a senior climatologist at Environment Canada, told CTV's Your Morning on Thursday.
Canadians should also brace themselves for what Phillips calls more "rock-and-rolling" weather. "It doesn't matter what kind of summer you have, there's going to be some severe weather," he said.
Overall, Phillips says the summer will bring in "good beer-drinking weather" for B.C. and the Prairie provinces, as well as in most of eastern Canada. However, coastal areas in Nunavut and Newfoundland and Labrador will be exceptions.
"There's a lot of very cold water, a lot of ice still there, and so we don't think that's going to warm up in June, July, August that much," Phillips said.
But the real forecasting challenge this year is southern Ontario and western Quebec, where Environment Canada's weather models offer competing scenarios.
"There's three possibilities: warmer, colder or normal, and the models say it could go either way," Phillips said. He added that he would bet "a few loonies" on a warmer-than normal summer, if he had to pick one.
"We think we're owed a good season and I think nature will come through for us," Phillips said.
In terms of wildfire risks, Phillips says the summer will be nothing like last year, when flames ravaged Western Canada and destroyed much of Fort McMurray.
"We're in better shape," he said, citing a wet spring as the best protection against fires. "The forests have been able to green up, and we haven't seen the problem of forest fires."
He added that summers have been gradually warming up over the last 70 years due to climate change. "We're still the great white cold north," he said. "It still is great, but not as white or as cold as we were."