FORT ST. JOHN -- New reports from the  River Forecast Centre show the province’s snowpack levels are at record lows.

On March 8th, the province provided an update on current snowpack levels that currently stand at 66 per cent of normal levels, up from 61 per cent last month.

The Forecast Centre works with the province to provide analysis and warnings on snowpack and water supply levels to mitigate flood risk and predict river flows in British Columbia’s waterways.

They are predicating that the lack of snow fall is an indicator of declining flood risk in most parts of the province, but are raising concern of potential drought and a lack of water supply heading into the spring if patterns continue on their currently trajectory.

Last month, Premier David Eby said he is worried about on-going drought in Northeast BC, saying drought conditions are ‘some of the most dramatic’ that we’ve seen.

The current snowpack level is the second-lowest in the province’s recorded history.

A lack of precipitation in Northeast B.C. is also driving drought concerns ahead of wildfire season, according to Environment Canada meteorologist Armel Castellan.

“Fort Nelson kind of being the bullseye for British Columbia has certainly been probably the worst in terms of precipitation deficit.”

He says on a 20-month scale, precipitation levels are down 35 to 40 per cent of normal levels.

Comparing levels to last year, Castellan says the warmer temperatures started the curing process of tree fuel and soil moisture early, that lead to worsening wildfire conditions.

“Since that time, since the summer of 2023, things have not necessarily gotten any better,” said Castellan.

He says May, June, and early July precipitation levels will provide a good indicator of how the wildfire season will play out.

“And if they don't, then of course we're off to the races in the worst way, whether it's human starts or possibly wildfire starts from lightning,” says Castellan.

The current drought level in the Northeast is listed as a five, the highest number on the provincial scale.