Cold Blooded Old Times
Despite the Canadian sterotypes "aboot" the cold snowy Great White North, these temperatures are odd and unseasonally low. Trees in the Lower mainland of BC are only now beginning to bud, I have been told. Fruit trees are later than usual in blossoming. Here in Saskatoon, the Saskatchewan River is now free of ice but I have a feeling that many of the farmers out here are wringing their hands with dread. As it happens we are in a period of decreased solar activity.
A brief accounting of what is happening with our local star can be read at The Guardian online. Sunpots, as I understand it, signify periods of more intense solar activity - meaning warmer temperatures on the average and (appropriately enough) brighter light from the Sun. Our Sun is ever-so dimmer than it was a few years ago and cooler. There has been some speculation that the world (and specifically the Northern Hemisphere) could see the return of another so-called Little Ice Age (or Maunder Minimum) that held our planet in a frosty grip from the 17th century until the mid 19th century.
Regardless of whether or not we could be seeing anything as extreme as the Little Ice Age, we are headed for some leaner and more stressfull times. I think many of us will have to rethink what kind of communities we live in and how we interact with our world.