If you’re a resident of B.C., you don’t have to be an avid news follower to know about the recent wildfires burning in forests across the province. Residents recently woke up to an orange sky and unusually smoky presence in the air resulting from a series of wildfires spread across the province caused by a drought.
A drought almost always stems from a deficiency of precipitation over an extended period of time, which in turn, results in a water shortage. It may be caused by insufficient snow, hot and dry weather, or not enough rain. In our case, it was the latter.
Hydrological drought is associated with low precipitation on water levels in rivers, lakes, reservoirs and aquifers. The solution is something we must all contribute to: water conservation. We can all help by reducing our water consumption, as many B.C. communities are already aboard with drought management plans and water conservation programs. Regions most at risk of water limitations include: Vancouver Island, the South Coast, Lower Fraser and Southern Interior, but this could include other regions as summer continues.
In B.C., a four-level drought classification system is used to explain the severity and appropriate level of response to drought conditions. More information on drought level classifications can be found online at: www.livingwatersmart.ca/drought/about.html.