Adapting to climate change

Adapting to changes in the weather has always been a part of farming life. With climate change, patterns of “normal” weather are shifting, with increased frequency and severity of extreme weather events.

Anticipated changes

Climate change will have significant challenges for agricultural producers in B.C. due to changes in production patterns, increases in crop damage, water shortages, and changes in the interactions between crops, weeds and insects.

On the coast, a longer and warmer growing season could permit higher yields and more diverse crops in the Fraser Valley and on southern Vancouver Island. However, warmer and wetter winters and springs could increase the risk of extreme precipitation, floods, pests, and delayed planting/harvesting.

In the interior, regions suitable for vineyards, orchards, and annual crops could extend north and the grazing season for livestock could be longer, but there may be increased drought and wildfires during the summer and fall. 

Climate Change Infographic

Source: Natural Resources Canada

Resources for agricultural adaptation

Successful adaptation will be necessary for the agriculture industry to thrive. The B.C. government and the agriculture industry are working in partnership through the Climate Change Adaptation Program B.C. to build the sector’s resilience to climate change.