These experts have authored program reports for ACT:

Jon O’Riordan
Author: Climate Change Adaptation and Biodiversity: Transitioning to an Ecosystem-based Economy in British Columbia

Jon O’Riordan is a former Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Sustainable Resource Management in the British Columbia Provincial Government. He has completed 35 years in the public service, mostly with the Provincial Government in environmental management and land and resource planning.

In his position in Sustainable Resource Management, Jon was responsible for completing six regional land and resource management plans. He also led the development of Land Information BC where all the provincial data and information on legal title and resource values on Crown and private lands are stored. This is the first integrated information base in the province and is a leading edge example of an integrated geo-referenced database for any provincial jurisdiction in Canada.

Jon joined the water team at the Victoria, BC-based think tank POLIS as a strategic water policy advisor in 2007 and focuses on provincial water policy reform and the ecological governance of water management. He is also a principal in the Integrated Resource Management consulting firm Fidelis.

Gordon McBean
Author: Extreme Weather Events Background Report

Dr. Gordon McBean received his BSc in Physics and PhD in Oceanography from the University of British Columbia and a MSc in Meteorology from McGill University. He was a scientist in Environment Canada from 1970 to 1988, when he was appointed Professor and Chair of the Atmospheric Science Program at the University of British Columbia. In 1992, he was appointed Head, Department of Oceanography. From 1994 to 2000, he was Assistant Deputy Minister responsible for the Meteorological Service of Environment Canada. He was appointed to his present position as Professor at the University of Western Ontario in July 2000.

Dr. McBean’s research interests are in atmospheric and climate sciences, ranging in scope from the natural sciences of the phenomena to the policies of governments and responses of people to them. He is undertaking new research on the changing climate and weather systems in the Arctic, and investigating the role of science in changing government policies. An area of interest is the changing occurrence of extreme weather events with climate change, their influence on public systems, and strategies for adaptation.

In addition to his activities at UWO, Dr. McBean is active nationally and internationally. He is Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Canadian Foundation for Climate and Atmospheric Sciences and a member of the scientific committee for the International Arctic Research Center of the University of Alaska, the Board of the International Institute for Sustainable Development, the Northern S&T Committee, and the Canadian Committee for the International Polar Year. He was a lead author for the Arctic Climate Impact Assessment. Earlier in his career he participated in the first Polar Experiment planning meeting and as Chair of the World Climate Research Programme, which helped create the Arctic Climate System Study (ACSYS). He has received the Patterson Medal for distinguished contributions to meteorology by a Canadian and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, the Canadian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society, and the American Meteorological Society.

Bruce Sampson
Author: Climate Change Adaptation and the Low Carbon Economy in BC

Bruce Sampson was a leader in energy policy in British Columbia for more than a decade in various senior leadership roles with BC Hydro. Prior to this, he held various positions with the Provincial Government including Economist with the Treasury Board Staff, Acting Director of Tax Policy, and Director of the Debt Management Branch.

In 1985 Bruce took a leave of absence from the Ministry of Finance and spent two years sailing to the South Pacific with his wife. Upon returning he ultimately headed the Provincial Treasury Division at the Ministry of Finance and Corporate Relations. Bruce and his team were responsible for establishing the first Medium Term Note Program for government issuers in Canada. The team also received distinction winning the International Financial Review’s award for Canadian Dollar Bond Deal of the Year.

Bruce joined B.C. Hydro in 1997 as Director, Strategic Issues and Planning. Shortly thereafter he was appointed Executive Vice President of Powerex, the energy-trading subsidiary of BC Hydro, where he was involved with development of Risk Management framework. He was also heavily involved with the development of BC Hydro’s position respective to the deregulation of energy markets in North America. He was eventually seconded to the provincial government team to assist in the development of the Provincial Energy Plan introduced in 2001. At BC Hydro Bruce and his team were instrumental in introducing the first voluntary renewable energy portfolio standard for a utility in Canada. BC Hydro was also at the forefront of the adoption of a triple bottom line framework and integration of sustainability objectives throughout the company. Innovest ranked BC Hydro as the top of the list of 27 companies they reviewed in 2003 giving the organization a AAA rating for sustainability.

Bruce has had extensive involvement in developing BC Hydro’s long-term strategy and goals, with specific emphasis on ensuring incorporation of sustainability in long-term goals, strategies and objectives. Bruce also has a strong external focus with seats on a wide range of boards and committees – he delivered over 40 talks to various groups in 2006/07. He is currently a principal in the consulting firm Sampson, Robinson and Associates Ltd.

Bob Sandford
Author: Climate Change Adaptation and Water Governance

Bob Sandford is the EPCOR Chair of the Canadian Partnership Initiative in support of United Nations “Water for Life” Decade. This national partnership initiative aims to translate scientific research outcomes into language decision-makers can use to craft timely and meaningful public policy. Bob also sits on the Advisory Committee for the prestigious Rosenberg International Forum on Water Policy where he works to bring broad international examples to bear on Canadian water issues.

Bob is the Director of the Western Watersheds Climate Research Collaborative, (WWCRC) and an associate of the Centre for Hydrology, which is part of the Global Water Institute at the University of Saskatchewan. He has also been appointed a Fellow of the Biogeoscience Institute at the University of Calgary. (BGS). He sits on the Advisory Board of Living Lakes Canada, the Canadian chapter of Living Lakes International, and is co-chair of the Forum for Leadership on Water (FLOW), a national water policy research group centered in Toronto. He is also a member of the Advisory Panel for the RBC Blue Water Project.

In 2011, Bob was invited to be an advisor on water issues by the InterAction Council, a global public policy think-tank composed of more than twenty former Heads of State including Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chretien, U.S. President Bill Clinton and the former President of Mexico, Vincente Fox.

Bob’s third book on water issues in Canada, Restoring the Flow: Confronting the World’s Water Woes, was published by Rocky Mountain Books (RMB) in the fall of 2009. Ethical Water: Valuing What Really Matters, was co-authored with Merrell-Ann Phare and will be published by Rocky Mountain Books in the fall of 2011.

Erik Karlsen
Author: Climate Change Adaptation and Crops & Food Security (coming soon)

Erik Karlsen, former Chair of BC’s Agricultural Land Commission, is a professional land use planner with almost 40 years experience in advisory capacities through management positions in federal, provincial, regional and local levels of government and the private sector. Mr. Karlsen worked for the BC Provincial Government for 29 years leaving in April 2002. Since then he has been a consultant, a member of advisory committees, and has taught at Royal Roads University in the Masters of Environment and Management Program. Erik received several awards of distinction for his contribution to sustainable development planning and management in BC and Canada.