Drought lasting more than a year declared over in Thompson-Okanagan

Drought declared over

A drought lasting more than a year has been declared over in the Thompson Okanagan.

Agriculture Canada’s drought monitor is reporting there are no longer any drought conditions in B.C., although recent warm weather means that could change in the future.

“For the growing season (April 1 to current), most of British Columbia received above-normal precipitation, however longer-term precipitation deficits remained in the southern and central Interior,” Agriculture Canada said.

The federal agency noted that it has been a quiet year for wildfires due to a cool and wet spring.

“However recent hot dry weather raised concerns for increasing wildfire and drought conditions potentially returning.”

“Despite the recent temperature increases and dry conditions, short- and long-term precipitation, soil moisture, stream flow and other indicators did not warrant a drought designation anywhere in the province and only small pockets of ‘abnormally dry’ conditions remained,” concluded the federal bulletin.

Drought was first declared in the Okanagan back in April 2021 with conditions worsening and peaking in August 2021 with an “exceptional drought” rating — the highest possible level and typically only seen twice in century. Some farmers were ordered to stop drawing water from the Kettle River.

Conditions then gradually improved over the rest of the year and into 2022, when a very wet spring finally made a dent in precipitation deficits in the region.

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