This report provides a national perspective on how climate change is impacting our communities, environment and economy, and how we are adapting. Although dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic has dominated the world’s attention, the issue of climate change remains firmly embedded in many global, national and sub-national dialogues. Indeed, while Canada is still trying to understand the pandemic shocks that are rippling through our social, economic and environmental systems, some encouraging insights are emerging that are relevant to responding to climate change. The overarching goal of the National Knowledge Assessment process is to assess, synthesize and share the latest knowledge on climate change impacts and adaptation in Canada.
Key findings of the National Issues Report:
- Communities of all sizes across the country are experiencing the impacts of climate change on their infrastructure, health and well-being, cultures and economies.
- Changes in climate are threatening the vital services that Canada’s ecosystems provide and are negatively impacting our water resources.
- While climate change will bring some potential benefits, overall it will impose increasing economic costs on Canada.
- We must look beyond our borders when assessing the impacts of a changing climate for Canada.
- Large gaps remain in our preparedness for climate change, as demonstrated by recent impacts of extreme weather events, such as floods and wildfires.
- Lessons on good practices are continuing to emerge and are helping to guide successful adaptation.