Latest posts in Climate & Clean Energy

Canada's 2020 target within reach with national strategy and best provincial policies

December 12, 2014 | Leave a comment
Photo: Canada's 2020 target within reach with national strategy and best provincial policies

(Credit: Chung Ho Leung via Flickr)

By Ian Bruce, science and policy manager

Here's a headline you don't often see: Canada is making real progress in meeting its climate commitments. The problem is, it is only in pockets of the country.

Continue reading »

Is climate change affecting my property insurance?

October 31, 2014 | Posted in | Leave a comment

By Ryan Kadowaki, Science and Policy Specialist

Nobody gets excited about paying property insurance. But anyone who has invested in a home or business understands the importance of protecting it. Insurance provides peace of mind against unforeseen events, so anything that undermines the availability of affordable insurance is cause for concern. It turns out that climate change is doing just that.

Insurance markets depend on reliable and predictable information, and climate change is throwing a wrench into this predictability. Insurers need to set rates to cover claimed losses and make a profit. Rates must be affordable so enough people purchase insurance policies, or the system will fail. Climate change contributes to more intense extreme weather events, such as storms and floods, prolonged droughts and wildfires. Insurers have lost confidence that they can pay for losses now that "once in a hundred years" events are happening more frequently. Insurers are raising premiums to protect themselves, and insurance rates are increasing and becoming unaffordable for many.

Continue reading »

IPCC AR5 Communications

October 31, 2014 | Posted in | Leave a comment
WG1-The Physical Science Basis

Something you should know about severe floods and extreme weather from VoVo Productions on Vimeo.

News Release- Worst impacts of climate change still avoidable if we act now
WG1 Media Backgrounder
Focus Canada 2013: Canadian public opinion about climate change

Blogs and Media

IPCC report shows action on climate change is critical
Attacks on climate change science hinder solutions
Climate change amplified in Canada, but worst effects can be averted: report
Canada harder-hit by climate change, but not too late to change course: report
Not too late to avert worst of global warming, Suzuki Foundation says
Canadians losing faith in government on climate change
Ottawa's climate position not in sync with Canadian opinion

Continue reading »

More research needed on northeast B.C.'s shale gas boom

September 19, 2014 | Leave a comment
Photo: More research needed on northeast B.C.'s shale gas boom

(Credit: Google Earth)

By Niki West, energy policy analyst

When you think about northeastern British Columbia, what pops into your head? Maybe a vague notion of pristine wilderness, boreal forest, caribou, grizzly bears and lots of snow? Would you be surprised to learn that the 20.5-million hectares of northeast B.C. extending from the B.C.-Alberta border to the northern Rocky Mountains and stretching from Tumbler Ridge in the south to the Yukon and Northwest Territories border in the north (pdf) is dotted with tens of thousands of oil and gas wells, and criss-crossed by pipelines, seismic lines and access roads? On average, every seven square kilometres has one well. Some areas are fragmented by grids of wells spaced every 200 metres.

Continue reading »

Canada should embrace diversity, the economy is no exception

September 17, 2014 | Leave a comment
Photo: Canada should embrace diversity, the economy is no exception

By Ryan Kadowaki, Science and Policy Specialist

The David Suzuki Foundation is co-hosting a sold-out public event in Vancouver on September 18th to explore the largely untold success story of Canada's clean technology sector. Tune in to the live webcast starting at 4:30 p.m. PDT.

Population science extols the importance of diversity. A genetically diverse population can adapt more easily to environmental change or withstand the introduction of disease. A complexity of traits allows a population to evolve in advantageous ways over time, making it more resilient and effective.

Economies also benefit from diversity. Diverse economies can cope better with change than those focused on a single industry or commodity. Acknowledging this becomes crucial as climate change threatens major disruption with particularly harsh impacts on major sectors like forestry and agriculture. Canada's history as a resource-based economy is littered with examples of sectors and communities facing perilous situations when environmental or market conditions become unfavourable. Canada will always depend on natural resources as part of its economic strategy, but focusing too greatly on a handful of industries is akin to limiting your gene pool.

Continue reading »