Climate Change Adaptation and Extreme Weather

Climate change is driving increasingly extreme weather events, threatening severe damage to the infrastructure and systems that support life in Canadian communities.

Extreme weather events such as severe thunderstorms, ice storms, blizzards, windstorms, tornadoes and hail are part of life in Canada, but these hazards are becoming increasingly frequent and intense as a result of climate change.

Both the current impacts and future risks associated with extreme weather events demand climate adaptation policies, courses of action designed to reduce the vulnerability of communities and strengthen their capacity to cope with weather-related impacts.

This report, co-authored by IPCC author and former federal ADM Dr. Gordon McBean and policy scholar Dr. Dan Henstra, outlines recommendations to support the development of Canadian climate adaptation policies at the community level, and identify ways in which the federal and provincial governments can facilitate and support these local actions. One of the report’s central focus areas is disaster risk reduction. Specific attention is devoted to two policy fields—emergency management and infrastructure planning—that are particularly sensitive to extreme weather events.

The report is presented as a set of Summary Recommendations, drawn from a more comprehensive companion report entitled Climate Change and Extreme Weather: Designing Adaptation Policy, available below.



Background Report