Natural Disaster Resilience

Summary

Natural disasters are becoming more frequent and severe, driven in part by climate change. Between 2008 and 2018, there were close to 200 major disasters in Canada, including the floods in Calgary and Toronto in 2013, the Fort McMurray wildfire in 2016, and the wildfires BC in 2017 and 2018. These events affected hundreds of thousands of people and caused tens of billions of dollars in damage.

In a future increasingly affected by climate-changing events, the ability of communities and Canadians to be ready for, withstand, and recover from natural disasters will be critical.

This assessment will explore opportunities to enhance the resilience of Canadian communities in the face of a changing climate by better integrating climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction efforts.

The Sponsor:

Public Safety Canada

The Question

What key opportunities exist to improve disaster resilience in Canada through better integration of disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation research and practice?

The Expert Panel on Natural Disaster Resilience:

Scott Vaughan, (Chair) Senior Fellow, International Institute for Sustainable Development; Former Federal Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development

Alain Bourque, Executive Director, Ouranos

Elliott Cappell, Director, Climate Change, WSP Canada

Stephanie E. Chang, Professor, School of Community and Regional Planning and Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability, University of British Columbia

Jimena Eyzaguirre, International Team Director and Senior Climate Change Adaptation Specialist, ESSA Technologies Ltd.

Mike Flannigan, Professor of Wildland Fire, Department of Renewable Resources, University of Alberta

Kathryn Hyland, Senior Vice-President, Risk Management, Swiss Re

David Lapp, FCAE, Practice Lead, Climate Change Adaptation / Principal Climate Scientist, Engineers Canada

Tara McGee, Associate Chair (Undergraduate Studies), Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Alberta

Kevin Quigley, Professor, School of Public Administration and Director, MacEachen Institute for Public Policy and Governance, Dalhousie University

Sarah Sargent, Vice President – Programs, Canadian Operations, Canadian Red Cross

Laxmi Sushama, Professor and Trottier Chair in Sustainability in Engineering and Design, McGill University

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Expert Panel

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