A farmer harvests her hay on a farm near Cremona, Alta., on Sunday, Aug. 16, 2020. A report released by Natural Resources Canada says the Prairies are warming at the fastest rate of any region in the southern part of the country. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

A farmer harvests her hay on a farm near Cremona, Alta., on Sunday, Aug. 16, 2020. A report released by Natural Resources Canada says the Prairies are warming at the fastest rate of any region in the southern part of the country. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

Federal scientists predict Prairie climate as drier, grassier and fiery

Federal scientists are predicting a hot, dry and fiery future for the Prairies.

In a report released today, Natural Resources Canada says the prairie region is warming at the fastest rate of any area in the southern part of the country.

The report says floods in the spring and fall, droughts in the summer and fires will increasingly plague the West, which will make water management a crucial issue.

It says grasslands and aspen parkland will expand and the boreal forest will shrink.

It says some alpine ecosystems are likely to disappear completely.

The report says those changes are already happening.

Out of the 20 most costly weather-related disasters since 1983, 13 happened on the Prairies.