(July 18) Preliminary Climate Risk Assessment for BC Webinar

On Thursday July 18, 2019, 9:30 AM – 10:30 AM PDT the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change is hosting a Preliminary Strategic Climate Risk Assessment for BC webinar. 

From the website: “This project developed a framework for and an assessment of 15 provincially significant climate-related risks, including both discrete events (e.g. wildfire, flood) and slow-onset risks (e.g. sea level rise). Consistent with ISO31000 methodology, the risk assessment framework is scaled for application at the provincial level, uses a scenario-based approach, and nuances the consequences that the risks produce for health and well-being, the economy, natural resources, infrastructure, and ecosystems. This project was motivated by a recommendation made by the B.C. Office of the Auditor General in 2018 that the province conduct a comprehensive climate change risk assessment. It will also help inform the development of a new Adaptation Strategy for BC due to be released in 2020.”

Click here to register.


(July 15) Inspiring Climate Action: Seeking a Web Savvy Contractor

The Inspiring Climate Action project needs a contractor to produce web content for their site. The site will showcase climate adaptation initiatives and professionals working in climate action across BC.
The “microsite” will be mounted on weADAPT, an initiative of Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI). Ideally, our efforts in BC will become part of a Canada-wide and international knowledge network focused on climate change.
To learn more about this position and for application details, please click here.

(April 23-20, 2020) 7th Climate Change Online Conference (CLIMATE2020)

The Research and Transfer Centre ‘Sustainability and Climate Change Management’ of the Hamburg University of Applied Sciences, Germany, will convene the seventh Climate Change Online Conference (CLIMATE2020). Taking place exclusively on the internet, CLIMATE2020 is guided by and will contribute to SDG 13 (climate action). Specific themes to be addressed include:

  • Resilience and Capacity Building;
  • Intelligent Climate Policy and Governance;
  • Education, Awareness and Adaptation;
  • Climate Finance and Access to Funding;
  • Intelligent Climate Planning, Small Islands and Developing Countries; and
  • Climate Change as a Threat to Biodiversity.

Learn more about this event on their website here.


(July 25) CIP’s National Climate Change Survey Webinar

On July 25, 2019 the Canadian Institute of Planners (CIP) will host a webinar to discuss the findings of their National Climate Change Survey. Planners have an acute role in integrating climate action policy into planning, and to create communities that are resilient, receptive, and engaged in long lasting climate stability.

Updated CIP climate change policies have been developed in tandem with planners, climate scientists, advocates, and other partner institutions using surveys, interviews and focus groups.

Click to view the updated CIP Policy on Climate Change. 

To register for the webinar, please follow this link.


(July 10) CBC News Article Outlines Co-Benefits of Climate Action

In an article released today, “Fighting climate change may be cheaper and more beneficial than we think”, CBC News talks with ACT’s Executive Director Deborah Harford and Ann Dale, a professor in the School of Environment and Sustainability at Royal Roads University. The article details the numerous co-benefits of pursuing adaptation and mitigation strategies; a synergistic approach we refer to as Low Carbon Resilience (LCR). Co-benefits have the advantage of more localized and short-term impacts, a characteristic than can help incentivize and spur decision making changes in local government.

Currently, ACT is working on developing a LCR framework for the Integrated Climate Action for BC Communities Initiative (ICABCCI). This framework will help communities integrate synergistic adaptation and mitigation planning, while also helping them realize the multiple co-benefits that can be achieved through an LCR approach. Understanding this lens will help governments plan for both short term and long term goals.

Multiple examples of co-benefits were mentioned in the CBC News article:

  • Financial; in countries like China, air pollution will reduce GDP by 10%.
  • Ecological; restoring wetlands can act as natural buffers to sea level rise, reduce emissions from pumping, and can sequester carbon in the process.

Along with these co-benefits, others such as job creation, improved water and air quality, and reduced urban temperatures exist within the crux of LCR climate action strategies.

Read the full article here.


(October 30-31, 2019) Zero Waste Conference, Vancouver

Did you know that of 92.8 billion tonnes of minerals, fossil fuels, metals, and biomass entering the economy, only 9% are re-used annually? “Not good enough” says Circle Economy CEO and Zero Waste Conference Keynote Speaker Harald Friedl. On October 30-31, 2019 join us in attending the Zero Waste Conference in Downtown Vancouver to discuss circular economy success stories, waste prevention innovations, and gain local and global perspectives on waste prevention. 

This years conference will explore questions such as, what steps does Canada need to take to integrate into the global circular economy? What does success look like in Canadian economies, lives, and communities? To learn and understand more about these complex questions, the Zero Waste Conference will weave theory and action with profound speakers to motivate listeners to engage in a zero waste, circular economy.

Recently announced Keynote Speakers include Harald Friedl, CEO, Circle Economy and Arthur Huang, CEO and Founder of Miniwiz.

For information, or to register for the Zero Waste Conference, click here. We hope to see you there!



(July 9) Launch of Climatedata.ca

The Government of Canada has launched an exciting new interactive website, Climatedata.ca. The climate information portal will allow users to visualize, analyze, and interact with climate data projections across Canada. From large scale to specialized, individual grids, reliable access to online data will help Canadians in all industries understand and adapt to changing climates.

Highlights of the Climatedata.ca Portal: 

  • Historical and projected climate data available to view and download at a resolution of about 10 x 10 Km
  • 25 different temperature and precipitation indicators available, including for extremes.
  • Updated Intensity-Duration-Frequency (IDF) curves

The site, developed in partnership with Environment and Climate Change Canada, the Computer Research Institute of Montréal (CRIM), Ouranos, the Pacific Climate Impacts Consortium (PCIC), the Prairie Climate Centre (PCC), and HabitatSeven, is an interactive tool that will help decision makers integrate climate data and adaptation into their strategies.

Click to visit the climatedata.ca portal!




(July 8) Panelists Announced for August 7, 2019 US LCR Webinar

Panelists for the upcoming US LCR Webinar on Climate Action Planning were announced today. The webinar, based on the Climate Action Planning book by Michael Boswell, Tammy Seale, and Adrienne Greve, will discuss how cities and communities can address climate change locally, and offers a guide to creating low carbon resilient (LCR) communities. The recently announced panelists Tammy L. Seale and Adrienne Greve will discuss new and exciting examples of implemented projects to outline what is working in communities, and remaining challenges.

Tammy Seale (top left) is the the Sustainability and Climate Change Services Manager at PMC, a municipal services consulting firm in California. She has lead numerous climate action plans, GHG inventories, and sustainability programs.

Adrienne Greve (bottom left) is an Assistant Professor of City and Regional Planning at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. She assists California communities in preparing climate action plans, and integrates climate action planning throughout planning curricula. The online webinar will be held on August 7, 2019 from 1:15 – 2:45 EDT. Click here to register!


(July 4) CBC News Coverage of CCA Climate Risks for Canada Report

“We can predict and project the climate change impacts that are coming down the line for our regions in Canada,” said Deborah Harford, a member of the expert panel, “and because we know that, we can think strategically about how to reduce damage and respond proactively.” – CBC News

In a conversation with CBC News, ACT Executive Director Deborah Harford discusses the conclusions of the most recent report from the Council of Canadian Academies. The report, entitled Climate Change Risks for Canadians brings together expert panelists to discuss the most acute climate change risks facing Canadians today. These risks include impacts on physical infrastructure, human health and well-being, fisheries and ecosystems, and impacts to coastal and northern communities.

As Harford outlines to CBC, adaptation opportunities with meaningful impacts are there, we just need to know where they are, and how to respond and apply them effectively. For example, “building back better”; in the wake of natural disasters that are costly and destructive, the rebuilding process can be an opportunity to upgrade physical infrastructure, while embedding synergistic adaptation and mitigation policy. Not only is physical infrastructure something that can upgraded and modified more easily and effectively than other areas of risk, but it is an area where governments already understand what needs to be done.

“Although adaptation isn’t a household word, you scratch the surface on any community that’s already facing severe flood damage, and let me tell you: They are doing adaptation.” – Deborah Harford, for CBC News

The article continues to warn of maladaptation, outlining that sometimes the things that we believe protect us, such as dikes and levees, lead to a false sense of security and a lack of community knowledge. However, there are many adaptation measures that, if taken properly, will result in co-benefits. The example cited in the article, is planting trees. Trees can reduce floodwater risks by absorbing stormwater, can reduce the Urban Heat Island effect through urban shading and evapotranspiration, and also contribute to mitigation by reducing the need for air conditioning and sequestering carbon.

The Climate Change Risks for Canadians report, released July 4, 2019, is an effective tool for understanding which types of risks can be managed by adaptation measures, and also explores how the federal government can best inform its decision-making in response to these risks.


(July 4) Release of Canada’s Top Climate Change Risks Report

Today sees the release of the Canada’s Top Climate Change Risks report, which identifies the top climate change risks for Canada, assesses which risks have the greatest potential for adaptation, and explores how the federal government can best inform its decision-making in response to these risks. Although many governments throughout Canada have studied climate change risks, there are few complete assessments that will help prioritize government responses to risk.

The findings emphasize 12 major areas of climate change risk facing Canada from a national perspective and identify six areas where these risks are most acute. All 12 areas of risk considered by the Panel can be meaningfully reduced through adaptation measures that lessen vulnerability or exposure.

The six areas of acute climate risk facing Canada are: 

  • Physical Infrastructure
  • Coastal Communities
  • Northern Communities
  • Human Health and Wellness
  • Ecosystems
  • Fisheries

ACT Executive Director Deborah Harford served on the expert panel that informed development of this timely national report, which addresses matters of significant urgency and cost for Canada’s local governments, economy, and citizens.

For more details, visit the Council of Canadian Academies website, and find the full report here.


(July 8) Early Bird Registration for the Livable Cities Forum 2019

Join us from October 28-30, 2019 in Victoria, BC for the eighth annual Livable Cities Forum: Building Better Communities Through Resilience. 

The Livable Cities Forum is being hosted by the City of Victoria in partnership with ICLEI CanadaSHIFT Collaborative, and ACT (the Adaptation to Climate Change Team), SFU. The Forum is a boutique event widely known for its high-caliber interactive sessions and diverse speakers on climate change action.

The impacts of climate change are being felt across social, built, natural, and economic systems in complex, interconnected ways. Now, more than ever, collaborative community-level action is required to build sustainable, healthy, and equitable communities that are resilient to the risks posed by a changing climate and more frequent extreme weather. The 2019 Forum is designed to showcase the importance of taking this synergistic approach to climate change planning and implementation at the local level.


  • A variety of workshops, plenaries, and dynamic sessions highlight how integrated action can enhance the vitality of our communities.
  • Two evenings of delicious local food, networking, and dialogue on building better communities.
  • On October 30, choose from a variety of half-day excursions and workshops in the City of Victoria and surrounding area. Tours will be led by local hosts and will showcase community adaptation and resilience initiatives from across the city.

Click here to view the preliminary program.

Attend the full conference for the early bird rate of $559!*

*ICLEI/BARC member discounts, and limited day rates and student rates are also available. Processing fee and taxes will apply.


(June 28) – In Our Backyard: What Climate Change in Canada Looks Like

“Climate change is no longer theoretical. It’s in our backyard.”

CBC News’ recent project about climate change is self described as “ambitious and comprehensive”. The project “In Our Backyard” details how different residents across Canada have been made to cope with the extreme weather events that have costed them more than just dollars; in some cases members of their family, their homes, and their livelihoods. From extreme heat waves, to a rising sea gnawing away at the coastline, the “In Our Backyard” series makes what we know to be true about climate change glaringly real and poignant.


(June 14) Integrated Climate Action for BC Communities Initiative: Summary of Survey One Findings

Canadian local governments face a perfect storm of limited capacity, aging infrastructure, and climate change impacts. Leaders and staff are experiencing increasing public pressure to ‘future-proof’ communities from the projected impacts of dangerous climate change by both reducing emissions (mitigation) and preparing for impacts such as flooding, sea level rise, and heatwaves (adaptation). Although mitigation and adaptation have often been planned separately, there are major benefits to integrating them, using a lens we refer to as low carbon resilience, or LCR. LCR is an approach designed to achieve strategic integration of climate change adaptation and mitigation, and holds potential for streamlining resources, identifying effective policy synergies, and pursuing co-benefit opportunities.

ACT’s Integrated Climate Action for BC Communities Initiative (ICABCCI) is designed to advance synergistic climate action in communities. Our team is committed to engaging a cross section of small/large, rural/urban BC local governments and First Nations over the next three years (2019-2022). In March 2019, ACT surveyed twelve communities that have expressed interest in joining the ICABCCI LCR partner network. Respondents reported the need for greater integration of climate action in planning, strategy, and implementation. Participants identified key LCR opportunities in asset management, corporate strategic planning, flood/stormwater planning, and in the coordinated implementation of their existing mitigation and adaptation plans. They also prioritized enabling conditions needed to pursue an LCR approach, including strong leadership, funding, coordination, and role clarity.

These results are helping to frame how ACT’s ICABCCI team will work with and support partner communities. This report highlights key ICABCCI survey results and summarizes conclusions and next steps.

Participating Communities:

  • Elkford
  • Gibsons
  • Port Moody
  • Prince George
  • Salmon Arm
  • Summerland
  • Surrey
  • Tsleil-Waututh Nation
  • Vancouver
  • Vernon
  • Whistler

Climate Action Planning Webinar August 7

Climate Action Planning webinar August 7 Creating low-carbon resilient communities with Michael Boswell, Adrienne Greve, and Tammy Seale



CEA Climate and Energy Awards Close July 2

The Community Energy Association (CEA), The Province of BC, BC Hydro, FortisBC, Real Estate Foundation of BC, and Union of BC Municipalities are pleased to invite all BC local governments to
participate in the 2019 Climate & Energy Action Awards.

The awards are offered annually to a municipality or regional district implementing a project or program best integrating energy and climate planning into community or corporate planning and development processes. New in 2019, a category is offered to a local government showing leadership in advancing climate resilience and
adaptation initiatives. Award categories are:

1. Community Planning and Development
2. Corporate Operations
3. Climate Adaptation

Submission must represent a plan or action, with
emphasis on implementation. Please download the
electronic application and instructions from
Awards tab of the Community Energy Association
website at www.communityenergy.bc.ca.


More information on the award



Webinar on Canada’s Changes in Temp and Precip

Webinar from Canada’s Changing Climate Report summarizing chapter 4 – temperature and precipitation – Thursday July 4 https://forms.gle/TDgnXq4xW9paToXJ7

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