Hazard Change caused by Climate Change Workshop

On February 22nd, 2016, the Centre for Natural Hazard Research (CNHR) in co-operation with the SFU Adaptation to Climate Change Team and Natural Resources Canada hosted a one day workshop to stimulate a national discussion about weather-caused and -triggered hazards that are changing in a warming world.

The two main goals of the workshop were:

  1.  improve knowledge and confidence of practitioners and policy makers when making land-use decisions or changes in professional practices that require a consideration of climate change;
  2.  spark a national initiative to produce an understandable document that summarizes changes to hazards driven by changes in climate.

The report of the workshop, slide decks and video recording are available in the CNHR website downloads.  

Workshop delegates represented a cross-section of stakeholders and experts in natural hazards, risk management, policy and climate change, and included researchers, engineers, geologists, planners, officials from local, provincial, and federal government, and emergency managers.

Plenary presentations provided a framework for the workshop and stimulated discussions. The morning presentations provided an overview of the present understanding and implications of climate change, a summary of the impacts of sea-level rise in Canada, and some of the challenges and needs of those dealing with weatherrelated hazard management. The presentations provided perspectives of a municipality (the City of Vancouver), a developer, and professionals (engineers and geoscientists). Plenary presentations in the afternoon provided insight into current provincial and federal initiatives and programs related to climate change adaptation.

Two question-guided breakout sessions, one in the morning and one in the afternoon, allowed the workshop participants to share their thoughts and experience on the challenges and needs they face in their discipline or profession in understanding the intensity and frequency of climate-based and climate-influenced hazard events in a changing climate. The morning breakout session focused on identifying challenges in understanding and further aimed to assess whether there is a discrepancy between hazards that pose the largest threats and hazards that pose the biggest challenges in understanding. In the afternoon, the breakout session concentrated on identifying needs, in the form of information, tools, and governance and/or partnerships.

The Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions sponsored this event.