Types of weather forecasts and how to use them

Public forecasts are among the most common sources of information about what the weather has in store for the next few days, but they are not the only source. Environment Canada also issues a variety of specialized forecasts for clients ranging from mariners to aviators to persons susceptible to poor air quality.

This section gives you the lowdown on the types of forecasts available, what they mean, and how to use them. For example, marine forecasts and ice services help mariners make important operational decisions based on projected weather and ice conditions, while forecasts from aviation services are critical to the safety of private and commercial aircraft.

When it comes to planning for the coming months and seasons, farmers, utility companies and others rely on Environment Canada’s long-range forecasts, while individuals with respiratory concerns look to its air quality forecasts for advice.

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