Climate Change Adaptation Toolkit – June Project Update

Since I last wrote about the toolkit project, we have gathered a team of 6 volunteers and have been busy at work researching climate change and developing materials for focus groups on climate change impacts. Using Natural Resource Canada’s report “Climate Change Impacts and Adaptation: A Canadian Perspective:”, we know that these will be the broad impacts we can expect under climate change conditions:

  • more frequent and intense extreme weather events
  • more precipitation in the form of rain in the winter and spring, less precipitation in the summer months
  • increased number of extreme hot days in the summer, decreased number of extreme cold days in the winter

And we are expecting that these areas will be impacted in the Region of Waterloo:

  • Water Resources – lower spring runoff, more summer-time drought, more intense rainfall events
  • Transportation and Infrastructure – more cars on road due to more hot weather days, damage to roads from more freeze/thaw events and extreme weather events, impacts to shipping
  • Human health – temperature stress and air quality impacts form more hot weather days, new infectious diseases
  • Energy – Hydroelectricity expected to be reduced, more power outages from storm events and increased demand from AC, less cooling water available for nuclear and coal power stations
  • Food and agriculture – food prices to fluctuate, and availability and quantity of food to vary, due to droughts, floods, other extreme weather events, and limitations to transportation

We are currently trying to get input from experts and practitioners in the five impact areas listed above on how regular people can adapt. Our plan for getting this information is to hold focus groups over the next few weeks to get this information. After the focus groups, we will work on analyzing the data and putting that into a written version of our toolkit.

If you are interested in being involved in one of these focus groups, please contact us asap at transitiontoolkit@gmail.com. We would love to hear from you! And as before, if you’re interested in volunteering to help get this toolkit off the ground, check out our role descriptions here and send us an email.

About Sylvie Spraakman

Environmental engineer, environmental activist, and community volunteer. Loves KW!
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