Now more than ever, communities are experiencing the impacts of climate events. Preparing Canada’s communities – including the infrastructure that supports them – for these events is critical to keeping Canadians safe, protecting local businesses, and supporting a strong economy.
Today, the Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Housing, Infrastructure and Communities, the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, Mitch Davies, President, National Research Council of Canada (NRC), and Chantal Guay, CEO, Standards Council of Canada (SCC) announced a federal investment of $59.6 million over five years to amplify and expedite research initiatives that will help ensure communities have the knowledge and guidance – including codes, standards, guidelines, and tools – needed to adapt to the impacts of climate change.
This investment will build upon the current work funded by Infrastructure Canada to support the NRC-led Climate Resilient Built Environment (CRBE) initiative and the SCC-led Standards to Support Resilience in Infrastructure Program (SSRIP).
The CRBE initiative provides knowledge to adapt our public infrastructure where necessary, informs potential changes to building and infrastructure codes and standards, and creates guides, tools, and technical solutions to support resilience to climate change. This initiative will continue to support resilience across the construction sector, from design and decision-making to construction, operation, maintenance, and retrofit.
The SSRIP initiative delivers standards and related guidance that address priority areas such as heat, flooding, nature-based solutions, and transportation system resilience. The program is working with communities and beneficiaries to ensure that projects promote a consistent approach to climate change adaptation, increase resilience, and support informed decision-making for infrastructure and buildings across Canada.
Making adaptation investments today will have major economy-wide benefits in the years to come. The research is clear, according to the Canadian Climate Institute for every dollar spent on adaptation measures today, $13–$15 will be returned in years ahead in direct and indirect benefits.
“The research and data delivered through this investment will strengthen communities and help them better protect the homes, businesses, and livelihoods of their residents from the impacts of climate change. We will continue working with our partners to ensure the safety and well-being of Canadians across the country in the face of these impacts.”
The Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Housing, Infrastructure and Communities
“The safety and well-being of Canadians are priorities for our government as we already feel the impacts of climate change. This investment will support the important work being done that will help us ensure that Canada’s new and existing buildings and infrastructure are more resilient, reducing disaster risks and protecting communities across the country.”
The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry
“Research plays a fundamental role in how we design, build and maintain our infrastructure, buildings and homes to withstand the effects of climate change. Today’s investment continues to support the National Research Council of Canada’s work with collaborators across the country to build a climate resilient Canada through science and innovation.”
Mitch Davies, President, National Research Council of Canada
“Climate risks can be reduced or avoided by making sure communities are designed to standards that address climate change. Using standards, decision-makers and professionals can better plan, construct, and maintain climate-resilient, nature-positive, and sustainable cities. Working with experts across Canada, we are ensuring they have the tools they need to adapt communities.”