Climate Change Adaptation in B.C.
Efforts by B.C. and other jurisdictions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions will minimize the long-term impacts of climate change. Historical and ongoing emissions, however, mean the Earth will continue to warm for decades to come.
As a result, B.C. can expect additional warming, increasingly variable and extreme weather, changes to precipitation patterns and rising sea levels.
These changes present risks and opportunities for B.C. How we prepare for and adjust to climate change – referred to as adaptation – will shape the future of our environment, economy, society and communities.
Government ministries and public sector organizations are considering climate change in plans and decisions with the goal of ensuring that policies, programs, investments, and other initiatives are robust in the face of extreme weather events and medium-term to long-term climate change.
- The Climate Action Secretariat in the Ministry of the Environment works to coordinate and support implementation of B.C.’s Adaptation Strategy (PDF).
- BC Parks is considering climate change impacts in its conservation program.
- The Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations’ Climate Change Strategy (2013-2018) outlines important new direction in climate adaptation in forests. The Ministry has also completed a series of technical studies to assist practitioners in incorporating sea level rise into coastal floodplain mapping, sea dike design and land use planning.
- The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure considers climate change impacts in the design and cost of highway construction, in life-cycle cost of highway rehabilitation, and when improving highway safety and reliability.
- The Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development has recently incorporated climate adaptation into their Green Choices Guide, to provide guidance to planners and exploring opportunities to integrate adaptation into Official Community Plans.
- The Ministry of Agriculture is working with the BC Agriculture & Food Climate Action Initiative to support development of a Climate Change Adaptation Risk and Opportunity Assessment and pilot projects.