CBT’s Climate Change Initiative is bearing fruit

As countries and citizens around the world discuss the latest global scientific report on climate change recently published by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, communities in the Columbia Basin are already preparing thanks to their participation in the Communities Adapting to Climate Change Initiative (CACCI), spearheaded by Columbia Basin Trust (CBT).

In a statement released on Thursday, October 10, the CBT said that since 2008 the initiative has helped communities increase their resilience to climate change impacts, from offering one-day workshops to helping with year-long planning processes.

“Participating communities have taken important steps by sharing climate impacts with residents, undertaking projects that help plan for change, and considering climate change science when making decisions,” said CBT President and CEO Neil Muth said in the statement. “We applaud the communities that are planning and becoming more resilient to these changes and invite other communities to connect with us to learn more.”

Here in Revelstoke, the City’s Greeley Creek Watershed Source Protection Plan outlines how climate change is impacting the community’s water source and how to protect it, and a recent study by the Regional District of East Kootenay on flood hazards in the region and how climate change may be affecting them.

Elsewhere in the Basin the District of Sparwood has taken action on wildfire risk reduction, emergency preparedness, water supply and flood prevention. The District has also helped local residents understand what climate change impacts and adaptation mean by piloting a community engagement and communications project last year centered around the theme Nature Changes, We Adapt.

In Castlegar extreme precipitation in the past caused significant flooding, which prompted it to undertake an engineering vulnerability assessment of its storm water infrastructure in 2010. Today it continues to build on that work, and is now looking at developing a master drainage plan to help prioritize infrastructure investments.

In addition to CACCI, CBT works with a range of partners to increase awareness of local climate change impacts; provide credible, science-based information on expected changes; and support local governments, municipalities and First Nations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. For more information, visit www.cbt.org/climatechange.

CBT supports efforts to deliver social, economic and environmental benefits to the residents of the Columbia Basin. To learn more about CBT programs and initiatives, visit www.cbt.org or call 1-800-505-8998.