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Agroclimate Impact Reporter: Learn about AIR

Learn about AIR

What is AIR?

AIR is an online geospatial program designed for the collection and reporting of weather and climate impacts on farm operations across Canada. Each month, producers across Canada are invited to participate in a short online survey to inform Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) about recent agroclimate impacts to their farm. AIR offers the public, media, and decision-makers a useful tool with which to support the agricultural industry. Volunteering as an AIR reporter is a fun and meaningful way to contribute to science in Canada. And it only requires 10 minutes per month.

Extreme weather events and climatic variability can have significant effects on Canada’s agricultural sector and the economy. Over the past 10 years, drought, flooding and excess moisture have resulted in large costs to the Canadian economy. In 2001-2002, the cost of drought to the Canadian economy was $5.2 billion and stood out as one of Canada's most expensive natural disasters. More recently, in 2012, Ontario livestock producers received $2.4 million from AgriRecovery for losses caused by drought and $74 million to fruit growers for loss caused by spring frosts. In 2018, Prince Edward Island (PEI) producers received more than $15.6 million in direct assistance for losses caused by weather and rain that damaged crops and delayed harvest. But not only incomes and economy are affected: weather-induced hardships have adverse effects on the physical and mental health of agricultural producers and communities across the country. AIR has made a mission of monitoring the impacts of weather on water, soil and agricultural production to help impacted regions adapt, withstand and recover from climatic extremes.

If you would like to learn more about the Agroclimate Impact Reporter or anything mentioned in this article, please contact aafc.nais-snia.aac@canada.ca. (Please allow up to 48 hours for us to respond.)

Why participate in the Agroclimate Impact Reporter?

While AAFC uses a variety of tools, including data from weather stations, satellites, and computer modeling to understand agroclimate conditions such as drought or flooding, these methods alone cannot adequately describe the effects of weather events on a wide variety of impacts including field access, seeding and harvest delays, crop stage, and plant and livestock health. Instead, we must rely on citizens’ volunteer participation in AIR to provide information about on-the-ground conditions that affect agriculture. Because it relies on reports from a national network of volunteers, AIR is a citizen science initiative that Canadians can be proud of.

Thanks to our volunteer reporters

Agriculture and Agri-food Canada (AAFC) would like thank the thousands of volunteers across Canada who have contributed to the success of the Agroclimate Impact Reporter (AIR).

To view maps and other products produced by the National Agroclimate Information Service, visit the Drought Watch website.

To view maps and other products produced by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, please visit our Geospatial Products.

If you have questions or feedback, please email Agri-Geomatics at aafc.agri-geomatics-agrogeomatiques.aac@canada.ca.

Farm Stress Line

Severe weather events can have diverse impacts on our lives and considerable stress for producers. If you or anyone you know needs support to assist with stress, conflict or crisis, do not hesitate to contact a trained crisis worker. The Farm Stress Line provides support to farmers and ranchers across Canada. All calls are confidential.

Toll Free: 1-800-667-4442
Farm Stress Line website
24 hours per day. Seven days per week.

Disclaimer

Users are advised that the Minister and Department of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada make no assurance or warranty of any kind concerning the accuracy, completeness, reliability, or suitability or fitness for purpose of the information. Responsibility for any and all risks associated with the interpretation and any use or application of the data rests solely with the user. Users using this data do so upon the express understanding and agreement that AAFC and its Minister, officers, servants, employees, and agents shall not be liable for any damages or losses whatsoever, whether direct or indirect, consequential, incidental, special or general, economic or otherwise, that may arise out of such use. While AAFC endeavors to provide useful and reasonably accurate data, users accept that this disclaimer means that no liability shall attach for any use or application of this data.

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