Briefing Paper: Integrating Adaptation and Mitigation in Canada’s Energy Sector

ACT has released a briefing paper on the benefits to be gained from combining adaptation and mitigation actions in the Canadian energy sector.

Canada has committed to the rapid implementation of climate change commitments that will reduce carbon emissions (i.e. mitigation), reduce the nation’s vulnerability to environmental impacts (i.e. adaptation), and build a new “green” economy. Mitigation and adaptation have traditionally been approached and implemented as separate processes; however, the cost, speed, and scale of needed climate solutions suggest that an integrated approach to climate change that combines the two – what ACT refers to as low carbon resilience (LCR) – has advantages compared to approaches that separate them.

This briefing paper presents the results of a research project undertaken by Canadian researchers at the Government of the Yukon Department of Energy, Mines and Resources and the Ontario Centre for Climate Change Impacts and Adaptation Research (OCCIAR) that:

  • examined whether integration is occurring in Canada’s energy sector,
  • outlines co-benefits that can be achieved through integration that might not occur otherwise, and
  • identifies conditions for success.

Click here to read the full paper.


Taking Action on Green Resilience: Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation Synergies

Taking Action on Green Resilience: Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation Synergies


Taking Action on Green Resilience: Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation Synergies

Climate change impacts are already causing environmental, social, health, and economic problems for Canadian communities, and these are projected to increase. There is widespread recognition that we must plan responses to these impacts (climate change adaptation), and that reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions (climate change mitigation) is a crucial priority if we are to minimize them. Communities can maximize the effectiveness of actions and increase funding opportunities by advancing these approaches through integrated “Green Resilience” (GR) strategies.

This report draws together content and conclusions from a workshop entitled “Taking Action on Green Resilience” hosted by ACT, SFU and the consulting firm Green Resilience Strategies (GRS) at the 2017 ICLEI Canada Livable Cities Forum in Victoria, BC. The workshop brought together 40 public and private sector climate change practitioners from across Canada with expertise in urban planning, municipal policy, energy systems, buildings, engineering and communication. This report provides examples of GR measures, summarizes key benefits, provides insights on how to identify, fund and implement GR opportunities, and recommends new or updated research, analysis, technical assistance, incentives and regulations identified by participants as necessary to advancing GR practices.

Click here for the workshop report:

Taking Action on Green Resilience: Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation Synergies


Have Your Say: Coastal Flood Adaptation in Surrey

The City of Surrey is seeing feedback about options for coastal adaptation in Mud Bay.

Fill out their survey here before March 30 to give your opinion.

Surrey is asking about four options to respond to sea level rise in the area. These options are based on two years of work canvassing Surrey residents and technical experts about possible responses.

ACT was involved in this work through the Crescent Beach Community Meeting Series, which you can read more about here.

Fill out the survey now!


NRCan Job Posting: Science Policy/ Planning Officer

Natural Resources Canada’s Climate Change Impacts and Adaptation Division is seeking two (2) term positions for Science Policy / Planning Officers.


  • Graduation with a degree from a recognized post-secondary institution with an acceptable specialization in a science discipline related to the position.
  • Experience in the planning, analysis and development or application of approaches to climate change impact and adaptation.
  • Experience with multi-jurisdictional or cross-disciplinary initiatives or projects. Such experience may be gained in coordinating and participating in multi-stakeholder working groups or committees or, federal, provincial, territorial initiatives, or other similarly constituted activities.
  • Experience in preparing written documents (including reports, presentations and correspondence) targeting various audiences.

This positions is based in Ottawa.

Closing date: March 5, 2018.

Click here for more information and to apply.


City of Montreal & ICLEI Contest: Circular Economy

The Ville de Montréal, in collaboration with ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Climate CoLab, just launched an international contest on circular economy!

The Challenge

Cities are at the center of global economic growth, and account for 70 percent of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions (Paris City Hall Declaration, 2015). The main factors influencing GHG emissions in urban areas include activities at the heart of the urban economy and consumption habits of citizens (UN-Habitat, 2016). In order to maintain high economic growth rates, increase productivity and new business investments, while at the same time reduce emissions, the Ville de Montréal and many other cities around the world are working to transition towards a circular economy.

Transitioning to a circular economy at the neighborhood and city-level requires actions to be organized in a way that facilitates the sharing of information and goods, and ensures cohesion between different stakeholders (e.g. municipalities, industries, enterprises, citizens, institutions).

The Contest

As part of the ICLEI World Congress 2018, the Ville de Montréal and ICLEI are seeking innovative solutions that could facilitate the transition of cities and neighborhoods towards a circular economy.

Proposals being submitted could be (non-exhaustive list):

  • Well-defined ideas requiring additional research or planning;
  • Implementation-ready strategies or projects; or
  • Initiatives or best practices that have already been implemented and could be replicated elsewhere.

The global community is invited to submit proposals until April 1, 2018! All proposals will receive feedback from leading experts. For details and to enter, click here.

The Prizes

The author of the Judges’ Choice Award winning proposal will be invited to present his/her solution at the ICLEI World Congress 2018 to be held on June 19-22, 2018 in Montréal (Canada). Flight tickets and conference registration fees for this person will be covered. The Judges’ Choice Award Winner will also be invited to join a side-meeting with Montréal City staff and external stakeholders to further discuss this solution. For more details on prizes, click here.


Green Shores Level 2 Training: Burnaby, Feb 20-21

The Stewardship Centre of BC is hosting a Green Shores Level 2 training:

Green Shores Level 2 Training
February 20-21, 2018
Burnaby, BC

This two-day workshop provides participants with in-depth knowledge about how the Green Shores credit and rating systems can be used in shoreline management projects. The content is of interest to professionals (biologists, engineers, planners, landscape architects) and contractors, local and regional government staff, and others seeking to implement the Green Shores program for a shoreline improvement, new design or development, or other related shoreline projects.

The first day of the workshop begins with a review of shoreline ecosystems including threats and issues, management and restoration strategies, and regulatory structures in place. The Green Shores program, including benefits to stakeholders, steps for implementation, and credit systems, are also covered. The second day of the workshop focuses on application of the Green Shores credit and ratings systems through a series of desktop and field exercises. The workshop concludes with a guided group discussion around how to implement key concepts and put new learning into practice.

Click here to register.


New Report: Climate Change and Cities

The Urban Climate Change Research Network (UCCRN) has finalized its Second Assessment Report on climate change and cities, and now presents its Summary Report for City Leaders. Read it here!

This report summarizes the conclusions of the second assessment report, which includes the latest scientific research on climate change and cities. Mitigation and adaptation climate actions of 100 cities were documented, along with analysis of what cities need to do achieve their potential as leaders of climate change solutions.

The Summary for City Leaders synthesizes Major Findings and Key Messages on urban climate science, disasters and risks, urban planning and design, mitigation and adaptation, equity and environmental justice, economics and finance, the private sector, urban ecosystems, urban coastal zones, public health, housing and informal settlements, energy, water, transportation, solid waste, and governance.

Read the summary report here.


Renewable Cities: A Conversation with BC’s Minister of Environment

SFU’s Renewable Cities initiative is hosting the following event, with a webcast:

A Conversation with BC’s Minister of Environment: BC’s Climate Plan and the Urban Opportunity 
Friday, February 9
12:30 – 1:30 pm
SFU Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue, and online

When British Columbia laid out its first climate plan a decade ago, it set a precedent, embracing local governments to drive greenhouse gas reductions. As North America’s first jurisdiction to require community-level emissions targets, B.C. influenced other climate leaders, such as California, Ontario, and Oregon.

Today, ten years later, greenhouse gas emissions in the B.C. are virtually unchanged. The province and most local governments are not on track to meet their targets. With the Government of BC updating its climate plan, how will the urban agenda be considered? Join us for a presentation and conversation with George Heyman, Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy for British Columbia.

At the dialogue we will:

  • Learn about the government’s strategy for updating B.C.’s climate plan
  • Discuss opportunities for integrating urban priorities into the climate plan

Click here for more information.


Webinar: Creating Adaptive Policies

The Ontario Centre for Climate Impacts and Adaptation Resources is pleased to announce the following webinar:

Creating Adaptive Policies
Tuesday, January 30
1:00pm to 2:00pm ET
Presented by: Darren Swanson (associate of the International Institute for Sustainable Development, a consultant to the United Nations Development Group, and director of Novel Futures Corporation)
This webinar gives an overview of the seven principles for creating adaptive policies and presents example applications of theADAPTool to climate change adaptation policies in four Canadian provinces.

Public policies that cannot perform effectively under today’s complex, dynamic and uncertain conditions run the risk of not achieving their intended purpose. Instead of helping, they may actually hinder the ability of individuals, communities and businesses to cope with and adapt to change.

Click here to register.


Webinar: Information and Funding for First Nations Climate Change Adaptation Planning

Next in the Fraser Basin Council’s Retooling for Climate Change webinar series:

Information and Funding for First Nations Climate Change Adaptation Planning
Thursday, January 25
11:00 am – 1:00 pm PT

This webinar provides an opportunity for communities to learn more about Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada’s First Nation Adapt Program and to gain a better understanding of the future BC-specific climate information available through the Pacific Climate Impacts Consortium.

The First Nation Adapt Program provides climate change adaptation funding for communities to identify region-specific priorities, impacts and opportunities for climate change projects. The program also works closely with communities to integrate the best scientific and Indigenous Knowledge on climate indicators, flooding exposure, and future climate projections. Pacific Climate Impacts Consortium provides climate information to communities to better understand climate change specific to their region, how the region will be impacted, and what they can do to prepare.

Apply Now: Canadian Science Policy Fellowship

Apply now to be a Canadian Science Policy Fellow with the BC Ministry of Agriculture:

Project Title:  Understanding Barriers to and Determinants of Climate Change Adaptation

Climate change is already impacting the agriculture sector in British Columbia. The BC Ministry of Agriculture and the BC Agriculture and Food Climate Action Initiative have made significant progress in identifying agricultural adaptation priorities in recent years. However, understanding of actual adaptation practice adoption rates and determinants of adoption remains unclear. It is necessary to gain a better understanding of the opportunities and barriers to adaptation practice adoption, for example how regulations and policy impact BC producers’ ability to adapt to climate change. This is key to designing programs and policies to increase adaptation practices adoption in BC.

Required expertise
The fellow would have a diverse skill-set and interdisciplinary background in order to leverage knowledge and expertise across the sector (from science, industry, and the public service);
A PhD in Agricultural science, land and food systems, land use planning, environmental studies, geography, resource management, soil science or a related field;
Experience working with diverse stakeholders through collaboration and/or consultation;
Experience conducting meetings, speaking publicly, and producing high quality publications;
An ability to work independently, define appropriate project scope, and manage time and project milestones effectively.
Desirable qualifications
The ideal candidate would also have:
Knowledge and expertise in BC food system and climate change impacts;
Policy knowledge and/or experience.

David Suzuki Fellowships: Deadline January 15

Do you know a scholar interested in helping Canada transition to a low-carbon future?

If so, here’s an exciting opportunity: David Suzuki Fellowships!

Three $50,000 (plus $5,000 for travel and professional development) fellowships are available:

  • Climate change communications: The role of climate change communications to ignite the movement toward a lower-carbon future
  • Indigenous knowledge and climate change: Integrating traditional Indigenous knowledge into climate change solutions
  • Climate change adaptation and cities: Researching climate change adaptation and the development of sustainable cities

David Suzuki Fellows will spend a year with one foot in academia and the other in learning strategies to get their research the attention it deserves. They’ll make complex issues easy to understand and help motivate people to take action. Foundation senior staff and David Suzuki will mentor them all!

Application deadline: January 15.

Click here for more information.


2018 Bullitt Environmental Fellowship Application

The 2018 Bullitt Environmental Fellowship Application Opens January 1st!

The Bullitt Foundation will start to accept applications for the Bullitt Environmental Fellowship beginning January 1st. Each year, one graduate student attending a university physically located in British Columbia, Washington State, or Oregon is selected for this prestigious award of $100,000, distributed over two years. 

Eligible candidates will have a strong academic record, a demonstrated capacity for leadership, the promise of emerging as an environmental leader, and be nominated by a university faculty member. Students of color, those who come from a disadvantaged background, or who have overcome significant hardship are highly encouraged to apply for this award. 

Please spread this announcement widely and encourage any graduate candidate student with the desired qualities to apply by April 1, 2018.

Visit the Bullitt website for more information, FAQ’s, and complete application instructions.


ACT Article in Public Sector Digest: Low Carbon Resilience

The latest issue of Public Sector Digest includes an article from ACT!

ACT’s Senior Researcher, Edward Nichol, writes about low carbon resilience in Canadian municipalities. He emphasizes how municipalities are at risk from a variety of current and future climate change impacts, and that these risks affect the built and social infrastructure within municipalities – the buildings, transportation networks, energy systems, telecommunications, and water treatment systems, and the people that depend on them. Green infrastructure is critical to protect the well being of communities and to ensure social, environmental, and economical sustainability in an uncertain climate future.

Read the article here, beginning on page 16. 


Abstracts Due: Melbourne Climate Adaptation Conferece

The National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility (NCCARF) in Australia is inviting abstracts for their Sixth National Climate Adaptation Conference, May 8-10 in Melbourne.

Climate Adaptation 2018 is the major Australian forum focused exclusively on climate impacts and adaptation. In 2018, NCCARF is partnering with Engineers Australia to incorporate Practical Responses to Climate Change.

Submit your abstract!

Abstracts will be accepted until February 2, 2018 for presentations at the conference.

Click here for more information. 


Webinar: Forest Pathogens and Climate Change

The Forestry Adaptation Community of Practice (FACoP) is pleased to announce the following webinar:

Forest Pathogens: It’s not just trees that will respond to a changing climate
Wednesday, January 10
1:00 – 2:00 pm EST

Pathogens cause diseases of forest trees and the environment plays a critical role in regulating the disease process. It is expected that trees will be affected by future climate conditions, but how will future conditions affect the interactions between trees and pathogens? In this talk, Tod will outline potential changes in disease processes by closely examining how environmental conditions affect the life stages of foliar, rust, and root diseases as well as decay agents. He will also discuss potential adaptation strategies that can be utilized to mitigate the impacts of climate change on forest trees and potential forest pathology issues associated with assisted migration.

About the Presenter

Tod Ramsfield received his PhD from the University of British Columbia in Forest Pathology under the supervision of Professor Bart van der Kamp in 2002. From 2002 to 2010, Tod was employed by Scion (the New Zealand Forest Research Institute Ltd.) where he worked on DNA-based detection of forest pathogens that were of biosecurity concern to New Zealand. In 2010, Tod returned to Canada to work for the Canadian Forest Service in Edmonton, Alberta. Current projects include silvicultural control of Armillaria root disease, soil microbial community assessment in natural and reclaimed areas around Cold Lake and Fort McMurray, heart rot of aspen caused by Phellinus tremulae, and Dothistroma needle blight. Tod also maintains an active interest in invasive forest pathogens and is the leader of IUFRO research group 7.02.00 – Forest Pathology.

Click here to register.

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