Canadian communities need to adapt to avoid the projected increasing costs due to climate change, according to a new study by Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC). The Study of Economic Impacts of the Weather Effects of Climate Change estimates some of the future costs to the Halifax, Nova Scotia, and Mississauga, Ontario, communities from specific severe weather events stemming from climate change. It points to the need to increase infrastructure investments now to reduce costs down the road.
Researchers looked at two severe weather events per city. For Halifax, they studied extreme winds and storm surge flooding. For Mississauga, they considered ice storms and stormwater flooding. For each weather event, the researchers calculated what the economic costs to the city could be as a result of these weather events five years out (in 2020) and 25 years out (in 2040). They also considered the effect of worsening climate change, and ran the numbers for 2020 and 2040 three times – first using the cities’ current climate conditions, and then assuming moderate and high acceleration in the rate of climate change.