A green Christmas predicted for Nanaimo

NANAIMO – Environment Canada predicts flurries but not a white Christmas this year

Nanaimo residents dreaming of a white Christmas this year might be disappointed.

Winter arrived in the Harbour City last week, with a storm on Dec. 16 depositing anywhere from two to 10 centimetres of wet, slushy snow on residents. A second dump of the white stuff happened Wednesday, with the city receiving an average of 15 cm, some areas with a little more and some a little less.

But after the second storm, which quickly turned to rain, temperatures returned to seasonal normals with highs of around 6 C and lows of about 2 C and that trend was expected to continue throughout the weekend, said Matt MacDonald, an Environment Canada meteorologist for the Pacific and Yukon region.

He said the warmer weather would have melted away much of the snow that hit the Harbour City by now, with a cooling trend to return today (Dec. 24) and tomorrow (Dec. 25).

“We might actually see some flurries Christmas Eve and Christmas Day,” said MacDonald on Thursday. “Not huge chances of a white Christmas with snow on the ground, but we might see some snowflakes falling from the sky. I’d call it a weak cool system expected Christmas Eve, not a strong storm like we saw [Wednesday] by any means.”

In the past 50 years, the Harbour City has only had six white Christmases.

“Most people are keen to have a white Christmas from a visual standpoint, but they don’t want to deal with the impact of having to travel in it,” added MacDonald.

Environment Canada’s forecast calls for a high of 5 C today and a low of 1 C with 60 per cent chance of showers.

For tomorrow, it predicts a 70 per cent chance of flurries or rain showers with a low of 2 C and a high of 5 C.