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Climate change intensifying, not triggering, northern heat wave: climatologist


A heat warning is in effect for multiple N.W.T. communities. Senior climatologist Dave Phillips said there are many factors that impact weather conditions but that global warming is intensifying the heat wave and elongating its duration. (CBC) Some N.W.T. communities are under a heat warning this week with temperatures anticipated to hit 30 C in some Arctic regions.

Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) issued the warning for Aklavik, Inuvik, Fort Good Hope, Norman Wells, Tulita, Fort McPherson, Tsiigehtchic and surrounding areas.

Though Natalie Hasell — a warning preparedness meteorologist with ECCC — said it’s more common for heat waves to occur in southern N.W.T. communities, it’s not unheard of to have higher temperatures in the Arctic.

A 38 C reading in Siberia in 2020 raised concerns over extreme weather and human induced warming climate.

In the Northwest Territories, a “heat warning program” has only existed since 2017.

In 2017 no heat warnings were issued in the territory.In 2018 Hasell said there were “some” heat warnings.In 2019 there were warnings issued for communities in the South Slave and parts of the Dehcho region from July 17-25, however in 2020 heat warnings stretched as far north as Sachs Harbour, Ulukhaktok, Paulatuk, Tuktoyaktuk, Aklavik and Inuvik, […]

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