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Canada heat wave

Vancouver Island crops in danger due to excessive heat

Since last Friday, Satnam Dheensaw of Gobind Farms estimates he has lost 80 per cent of his early raspberry crop, 40 per cent of his tayberries and up to 25 per cent of strawberries due to the high temperatures that have gripped the region. Blackberries also suffered a lot.

Damaged crops naturally means fewer sales at a time when demand for fruit is high. The high temperatures also meant fewer workers out picking, and higher costs for watering and cleaning plants.

Overall, the heat and the damage are unprecedented, he told “It has never been this hot before, ever. We got up into the 30s and mid-30s (before), but not the 40s. We had damage then, too, but not as severe as this.”

Long-term, Dheensaw predicts temperatures will likely continue to rise. The region is preparing for “noticeable changes” to its climate in the coming decades, according to a 2017 report commissioned by the Capital Regional District entitled Climate Projections for the Capital Region.

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