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Nine Municipalities receive support to adapt Climate Change impacts

Bob Hall
By Bob Hall
May 27th, 2019

Columbia Basin Rural Development Institute (RDI) at Selkirk College is proud to announce it will be working with nine municipalities in the Kootenay and Boundary region in their efforts to strengthen their resilience to the effects of climate change.

RDI has been chosen by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) to help these communities in the areas of climate change assessment and capacity building in support of local climate change adaptation efforts. Municipalities are on the front lines of climate change, so it is important they are developing plans and implementing actions to become more resilient.

Through contemporary peer learning networks focused on climate change resilience activities and training specific to this region, the project will help local leaders to integrate climate change adaptation into new or existing plans and systems. Participating municipalities will work with their peers toward similar goals using innovative approaches and solutions to the challenges they face.

“In April 2019, the Board of Directors of the Regional District of Central Kootenay (RDCK) declared a climate action imperative in recognition of the global and local state of climate crisis,” says Sangita Sudan, RDCK’s General Manager of Development Services. “The opportunity to participate in this new collaborative partnership focused on increasing local government’s capacity to address key climate risks and impacts such as flood, wildfire and extreme weather couldn’t be more timely.”

The RDI has been supporting climate adaptation in the region since 2014 and is pleased to receive $239,000 in federal funding to continue this work.

“Selkirk College’s Applied Research and Innovation Centre, which houses the RDI, is pleased to continue to support climate adaptation efforts in the region through research and capacity building support,” says Dr. Terri MacDonald, Director of Applied Research and Innovation at Selkirk College. “These types of initiatives create valuable experiential learning opportunities for our students as they work alongside our community partners and faculty advisors to advance innovation in our region.”

The RDCK joins the City of Nelson, City of Cranbrook, Town of Golden, City of Kimberley, Village of Silverton, City of Rossland, Regional District of Kootenay Boundary and the Regional District of East Kootenay in addressing shared climate adaptation challenges through this project.

The work with these communities is funded through FCM’s Climate Adaptation Partner grants available through FCM’s Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program (MCIP). MCIP, delivered by FCM and funded by the Government of Canada, is a five-year, $75-million program designed to support and encourage Canadian municipalities to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to climate change.

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