The Canadian Drought Monitor (CDM) uses a variety of federal, provincial, and regional data sources to establish a single drought rating based on a five category system. These ratings are shared through monthly maps that show the extent and intensity of drought across Canada.
July precipitation was near normal throughout much of Canada except for southern British Columbia and parts of Quebec and Atlantic Canada according to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Drought report for July.
Despite late month rainfall in Ontario and parts of Quebec, drought conditions remain largely unchanged in that region due to an intense dry spell with abnormally warm temperatures in late June and early July.
Western parts of the Atlantic region continued to receive well below normal precipitation, intensifying the drought conditions throughout the region. In the Prairies, convective storm events brought adequate precipitation to most areas throughout the region.
Abnormally Dry (D0) conditions and pockets of Moderate Drought (D1) persist as water supplies and pastures continue to show drought impacts.
In British Columbia, dry summer conditions persisted throughout the southern parts of the province resulting in little change to the drought conditions.
Fifteen percent of the country Canadian Drought Monitor Conditions as of July 31, 2020 was classified as either abnormally dry or in drought; this includes twenty-eight percent of the agricultural landscape.
High temperatures and precipitation deficits through the first half of July intensified drought conditions across much of southern Ontario and Quebec; Abnormally Dry (D0), Moderate Drought (D1) and Severe Drought (D2) conditions all persisted across the region.
Over twentysix percent of the region was classified as abnormally dry or in drought, including sixty-four percent of the region's agricultural landscape.
Conditions were not much better in northwestern Ontario, where long-term precipitation deficits persisted from Atikokan to Thunder Bay and Nipigon. Data indicated that this area only received 50-75 percent of normal precipitation since November 2019; as such, D0 and D1 conditions remained in this area. Two pockets of Moderate Drought (D1) were added in southern Ontario, one from London to Burlington, the other from Newmarket to Belleville, as multiple drought indicators including SPI, SPEI and precipitation percentiles indicated dry conditions in the past 2 months.
Significant dryness also persisted in an area surrounding Ottawa and south towards of Granby, Quebec, leading to the expansion of Severe Drought (D2) conditions. While areas in central Quebec have seen improved moisture for the month of July, data indicated this area is still experiencing some surface soil moisture and groundwater level deficits. Thus, Moderate Drought (D1) was improved in the area but Abnormally Dry (D0) conditions remain in place. Various data also indicated the northern portion of Quebec received between 50-100 percent below normal precipitation in the last 3 months, leading to the addition of Abnormally Dry (D0) and Moderate Drought (D1) conditions.
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Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada