OTTAWA, May 16 (Xinhua) — Canadian Minister of Environment and Climate Change Steven Guilbeault on Monday launched a public consultation to develop the country’s first National Adaptation Strategy.
Guilbeault said the climate adaptation is a subject that is preoccupying every level of government and every community in Canada, kicking off a virtual adaptation conference attended by over a thousand participants, including provinces, territories, leaders of National Indigenous Organizations, as well as climate adaptation experts, industry representatives, and members of the public.
“We have to look at climate action in this 21st century as a matter of both offense and defense,” the minister said. “As we increase our preparations for the many impacts of our changing climate, it feels like fighting a war on two fronts.”
“We must reduce carbon pollution and we must prepare for the impacts of climate change,” he said.
Climate-readiness includes measures such as preventing the construction of homes on floodplains, increasing tree coverage in urban forests to reduce the effects of heatwaves, and using data to map and manage the risks of wildfires.
The Insurance Bureau of Canada said that severe weather caused 2.1 billion Canadian dollars (1.68 billion U.S. dollars) in insured damage in 2021.
According to the bureau, the “new normal” for insured losses from severe weather events across Canada is 2 billion Canadian dollars (1.6 billion U.S. dollars) per year. Uninsured losses are estimated to be double that amount.