I look out onto Hudson Bay and the waves that come crashing onto the shore remind me of summer days gone by. What? Waves in January? Well, welcome to global warming, the most talked-about phenomenon since the last ice age. What can be done about it?
Apparently politicians can do something, if you vote for the right ones, the ones who have clout, environmentally, that is. The big promises to reduce greenhouse gases emissions have me all excited, as I was hoping that somehow I can use my skidoo for at least a month and have fun with whatever snow is left on the ground.
Now that the New Year has rung in, some things have not changed as dramatically as the weather but are still newsworthy. Geese were still migrating south during the Christmas holidays. What does this mean? Does it mean that the traditional fall goose breaks will now have to be extended until December? Does that mean I have to trade in my snow shoes for flippers? Does that mean there is no need for the winter vacation to the Bahamas?
The caribou and moose have traded territories. In unprecedented fashion, Inuit have now killed their first moose and the caribou is now up there with the opossum as the most preferred road kill in the south, right after porcupine.
Will hockey have to remain indoors forever? Will the Rideau Canal be able to continue to maintain its title as the world’s longest skating rink? Is the snowball an extinct artifact from the past century? Can a snowflake appear again naturally on a ski slope or will the Winter Olympics be no more?
All fascinating questions, for sure. But do they have answers in the form of negative temperatures in the foreseeable future? Not so, say the weather people. The year 2007, they predict, will be the warmest on record. Climate change on steroids.
Polar bears are now earmarked for extinction alongside the musk ox. They have acclimatized for hundreds of millennia to year-round freezing. Perhaps they’ll adapt to the warmth like they did in fashion for the ice age. So what would polar bears be called in the future? Wet Taiga bears?
All I know is that the weather sure is something to talk about now, another worry to anxiously rub knuckles to the bone over. Why are we all in a tizzy about this?
First of all, the north will not be cold anymore, at least not cold enough to keep out the real nasty bugs that infest the south. We’ve got it good now, with only mosquitoes and blackflies. But as soon as the deer tick moves north, I’m outta here. Kuujuaq or bust.
The other factor is that the long cold days of pristine sunshine which adorns many a pretty postcard from Canada will have to be replaced with stormy weather patterns. The only good thing about this is that the odds for predictable weather will increase so much that lotteries can be held with the same odds as Lotto 6/49, so that the lucky winner will not only have cash, but good weather to go with it.
Whichever way you look at it, the weather is now a political issue, something that can win or lose elections in the national arena. So my bet is that, whoever can predict the weather accurately enough to make money out of it gets the vote.