Municipalities must improve climate change adaptation planning

Categories: News
Published on: November 18, 2018

Waterloo Region Record / James Jackson / 13 November 2018

Mitigation may no longer be enough to prevent climate change impacts from occurring. A UN report released last month found global emissions must drop by 45 per cent before 2030 and reach net zero emissions by 2075 to avoid surpassing the 1.5 C threshold in global temperatures.

Adaptation to climate change varies, but it can include: building flood defences and raising dykes; placing a moratorium on new construction in flood-prone areas; and choosing tree or plant species that are more drought-resistant.

“The gap in adaptation planning is concerning, because cities are more exposed to climate change risk than other levels of government due to high concentrations of people, property, and infrastructure,” [researcher Dave] Guyadeen’s study found.

His analysis also says implementation, monitoring and evaluation is relatively weak in Canada, and that many municipalities haven’t put enough emphasis on stakeholder engagement. Only one province ā€” Nova Scotia ā€” has mandated municipalities to create climate change plans.

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