1.6 Billion for climate change adaptation

City of Waterloo optimizes lighting

At the end of November, Ottawa announced a $1.6 billion aid plan for climate change adaptation. These funds deployed as part of a brand-new national climate adaptation strategy have been welcomed by the provincial and municipal world. Indeed, this strategy aims to better equip the provinces and municipalities to deal with the consequences of climate change in the country. A budget envelope of 1.6 billion was also announced for the financing of several targeted measures. Of this amount, 500 million will go to the Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund and 530 million will go to the Green Municipal Fund to support adaptation initiatives in the various municipalities. A 90-day consultation period is currently underway with the various provinces and Indigenous communities before adopting the final version of the document.


Climate change is having a severe impact on Canada. Our country is also warming at least twice as fast as the global average.  The government therefore believes that it is time to act since the average annual losses from disasters caused by global warming will total 15.4 billion dollars by 2030. In its most recent report, the Climate Institute of Canada (ICC) indicated that every dollar invested in climate adaptation could result in savings of $13 to $15. Ottawa has calculated that implementing its new strategy could save Canada up to $4.7 billion a year. The same ICC report also pointed out that by 2100, climate change could lead to revenue losses of around $865 billion per year in the country, the equivalent of six times the Quebec government's revenue c in 2022-2023. What we do not prevent today will cost us much more later, mentioned Mr. Martin Damphousse, first vice-president of the Union of Quebec municipalities last September. Among the measures that will be put forward, Ottawa wants to adopt new construction standards that are better adapted to the risks of flooding and forest fires. These could, according to the calculations of the federal government, save us around $4.7 billion per year.  $70 million will also be allocated for a new science-based global climate assessment.


It is true that for several years, record heat waves, floods and hurricanes, storms and wildfires never seen before have ravaged our homes, our businesses and our communities. This national strategy is  timely and proposes several interesting orientations that are welcome in the current context and which should, in addition, allow better coordination between the different levels of government and the private sector in terms of adaptation to climate change.


Source : La Presse




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