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(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!

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(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.

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(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.

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(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.

Highlights:

  • 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.

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(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.

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(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
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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

https://myemail.constantcontact.com/SAVE-THE-DATE—-Climate-Action-Planning–Webinar–August-7.html?soid=1102306387692&aid=U5JbaLb1_bQ

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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
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

 

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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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Biodiversity and Climate Change Resilience – Planning Green Infrastructure Policy Brief and Concept Note

SFU ACT has been investigating the intersection of biodiversity loss and climate change impacts in Metro Vancouver, and how integrated regional green infrastructure planning could act as a potential remedy to these. After a year of researching and hosting interdisciplinary cross-sector workshops, we are pleased to present a policy brief and concept note that provide important information for professionals, municipal and regional staff, stewardship groups, and decision makers.

The Policy Brief outlines what we learned through our research and series of interdisciplinary engagements. It is directed towards Metro Vancouver and its member municipalities and contains recommendations to improve collaborative green infrastructure planning for climate change resilience for municipal and regional staff and their elected officials.

The Concept Note summarizes the issue and makes the case for integrated regional collaborative planning and biodiversity-led green infrastructure and important steps that can be taken by municipal and regional staff to incorporate biodiversity-led green infrastructure into their planning.

Find out more about this research on our special projects page on Still Creek and check out our visioning document Metro Vancouver 2050: A Mecca of Biodiversity-led Green Infrastrucure

 

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Inuit Climate Change Strategy Released (June 7)

An Inuit-driven climate change strategy was revealed on June 7, which will see Inuit communities and governments across the Inuit Nunangat collaborate to address the growing concerns that the globe’s changing climate is having on the region.

The Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami (ITK)’s climate change committee had worked for two years to develop to the National Inuit Climate Change Strategy, a framework that functions to protect Inuit culture, language and livelihood against the effects of climate change.

Find out more via the link below

National Inuit Climate Change Strategy

Image result for inuit climate strategy

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IDRC Research Awards 2020 funding now open (June 22)

IDRC Research Awards 2020 funding now open for students focusing research on developing countries including climate change.  Deadine is September 18, 2019 – see URL below for more info.

https://www.idrc.ca/en/funding/idrc-research-awards-2020

Image result for idrc climate change

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(May 28) Building climate resilience in the Okanagan: A homeowners resource guide

The availability of water in the Okanagan valley is snowpack-dependent and a changing climate is resulting in greater extremes in weather and the availability of water. Extended periods of drought and flooding are expected to occur more frequently in this region. Responding to this ‘new reality’, the South Okanagan Real Estate Board in partnership with the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen has launched a new, digital, resource publication titled Building Climate Resilience in the Okanagan: A Homeowner’s Resource Guide.

Interwoven throughout the booklet are Syilx Okanagan Peoples perspectives. The Syilx Okanagan Nation was keen to participate in the guide to share their intergenerational knowledge of land, water, species and fire management for our shared region expressed in their own voice and language.

Check out the resource by clicking here. 

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(Apr 23) Canadians want more conservation, Indigenous stewardship

On April 23, 2019, Canada pledged to double its protected lands by 2020. Based on a new poll by Abacus Data for the International Boreal Conservation Campaign (IBCC), the poll found that Canadians strongly support Indigenous-led conservation and international cooperation as a way to achieve the goal. In addition, the poll recorded that top reasons Canadians support conservation partnerships between Indigenous Nations and Canada are;

  • A strong return on investment: analysis of two Indigenous Guardians programs shows that every $1 spent delivers $2.50 in social, environmental and economic benefits.

  • Supporting Indigenous-led conservation and stewardship is an effective way for Canada to meet international commitments to protect the diversity of plants and animals.

  • Clear conservation plans will create more certainty for those who want to develop natural resources.

For more information about the poll and to see the full results, click here.

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(June 5) Integrating Gender Equality in Climate Adaptation

On June 5th from 5:00pm to 7:30pm ACT, the Consulate of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, and Canada’s International Development Research Centre will be hosting a roundtable discussion on key gaps and opportunities to integrate gender equality in climate adaptation.

This event, Integrating Gender Equality in Climate Adaptation, will bring together gender and adaptation experts from Canada and abroad to discuss and unpack key gaps and opportunities for integrating gender equality in the process to adapt to global challenges and increase community resilience.

Where
Fairmont Waterfront, Malaspina Room
900 Canada Place

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For more information and to register (please register by May 31st) please click here.

 

 

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(June 6) Women and Climate Change: A Dialogue with Dr. Wanjiru Kamau-Rutenberg

On June 6th from 10:00am to 12:00pm the Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue is hosting a intimate dialogue to discuss what women need to be effective in the space of climate change and agriculture. Here, they will explore the African Women in Agricultural Research and Development (AWARD), One Planet Initiative and discuss what support women scientists working in Africa need.

What is shifting for women working on climate change and in agriculture? What opportunities exist to foster international partnerships among women scientists, policy makers, educators and practitioners?

For more information and to register click here.

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