My Side of the Fence

Is The Weather Changing?

  • Peter de Jong, Author
  • Dairy Farmer, Southeastern Manitoba

Last summer and this fall was one of the toughest, if not the toughest, that I can recall. It seemed the rain kept falling by a huge amount in a short period of time and for making hay this summer, this wasn’t good at all. We used to cut on a Saturday, not having to worry for a week and then bale on the following Saturday. This fall, in order to get the corn off the field, we needed to use large Caterpillar-driven machinery to some of the crop corn off. The combine corn is mostly still in the field, after weeks of getting stuck. I have not had a break since my son’s school graduation. After so many weeks, working seven days a week, it will wear you out! For the people who have tried to get a hold of me, I am sorry, my mailbox was full and I didn’t call back.

Now, if the weather will change, we would definitely start, albeit slowly, to grow other crops which we were not able to grow twenty years ago – like soybeans and plant more corn, receiving more tons per acre than before. We may have to look to till the ground to drain the excess ground water, which is widely done in Ontario, Alberta and North Dakota. Some farmers have started this already and are seeing better results at harvest. This nice warm fall, for many residents, is a pleasant change. Twenty to thirty years ago, we already had a couple of feet of snow and temperatures fell into minus double digits.

I do not want to use the words “Global Warming” but I just did! As a farmer in Manitoba, it’s only benefit all of us is, less Hydro use in the Winter, and less fuel to burn to heat our houses and barns. However, this must not be good, if Justin Trudeau says so.

Our carbon tax is going to benefit more bureaucrats. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, in power, has no control over his own bureaucrats; they increase their work force by 12%, their wages by more than 4% (in less than eight months). It’s no wonder that he is never home! When the cat is away, the mice will play.

The carbon tax is bad for Manitoba; no benefits at all for Manitobans and the money goes to the bureaucrats in Ottawa. As farmers, want to see a 100% re-investment from the money we pay to go back to Manitoba. For my part, I like this warm Fall – when there is a mechanical breakdown in the field, it is much more pleasant to repair under the combine at 13°C as opposed to -13°C.

I hope Justin Trudeau will come and help us, to learn and understand what farming means and meet hard working families, rather than flying to the Caribbean and South America, like snow birds.

So my message is – Yes! the weather is changing, and so let it be! No carbon tax for me, please.