OTTAWA—Ryan Ness, Director of Adaptation for the Canadian Climate Institute, made the following statement in response to the release of Canada’s final National Adaptation Strategy by the federal government:
“Climate change is already inflicting billions of dollars in damage to Canadian homes, businesses and infrastructure. And with wildfire smoke polluting the air in communities across the country, the threat feels especially close to home. It’s time for damage control.
“The National Adaptation Strategy is a strong tool to address the biggest climate risks facing the country. The federal government needs to move quickly to fund and implement it to insulate Canadians from the growing threat and mounting costs of climate disasters.
“Finalizing this national strategy is an important milestone. Ensuring it delivers the results Canadians are counting on will take significant new funding, sustained focus and coordinated action by governments across the country.”
- Investing in adaptation makes good economic sense: every dollar invested today to prepare for future climate impacts will return $13 to $15 in avoided costs.
- Climate change is already setting Canadians back $720 per year, on average, in repairs after flooding or wildfires and other impacts—and that price tag is expected to double or triple by 2050.
- Estimates by the Canadian Climate Institute found the estimated health costs of recent wildfires in one province alone over a period of one week tallied nearly $1.3 billion.
Canadian Climate Institute
ADAPTATION RESEARCH FROM THE INSTITUTE
Toward a Safer and More Resilient Canada (December 2022): our independent assessment of the federal National Adaptation Strategy
Closing Canada’s Adaptation Gap (May 2022): a scoping paper outlining key elements of a potential National Adaptation Strategy
Our full series on the Costs of Climate Change for Canada, including: