lsclogo

office   99 Christie Lake Road

         PO Box 37

         Perth, ON  K7H 3E2

phone  613-267-4200 ext. 3192

mail  info@lanarkstewardshipcouncil.ca

The Community Stewardship Council of Lanark County provided funding to publish the 2008 report, From Impacts Towards Adaptation: Mississippi Watershed in a Changing Climate.

The funding was provided to the authors so that the report could be printed and circulated locally. The authors Paul Egginton and Beth Lavender are residents and/or cottagers in Mississippi Watershed. They have both spent their careers working on climate change issues for the federal government. Miss-Watershed-CoverThe report is based in part on their broad experience in addressing climate change impacts and adaptation and on a stakeholder workshop held in the fall of 2007 in the Town of Almonte, Ontario co-sponsored by Mississippi Valley Conservation (MVC) and Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists (MFVN). Paul was a member of the organizing committee for the workshop and worked closely with both organizations. The authors were also presenters at the workshop. The full report is available electronically on the Mississippi Valley Conservation website (MVC.ca) and at the time of posting hard copies from a second printing are still available at the MVC office in Lanark.

Report Synopsis:

Warming of the climate system is unequivocal and recent warming is very likely due to humans. Climate is already changing in eastern Ontario and will continue to do so into the future. Canada because of its temperate to polar location will see more than double average global warming. Best estimates for Lanark County are that mean annual temperatures in all seasons can be expected to increase by about 3.5 C in the next 40 years above the 1960 – 1990 averages. Shifts in average annual conditions will be accompanied by changes in climate variability and the frequency of extreme weather and climate events. We will have to adapt not only to the direct affects of a changing climate but also to related impacts such as changes in water quantity and quality, forest cover, changes in snow and ice cover etc. Adapting and responding to these changes will present both challenges and opportunities. There is strong evidence that change is already occurring.

All sectors will be affected and will need to include climate change in their planning processes. Sensitivities, potential impacts, and possible adaptation options are discussed for eight key sectors in the watershed. There is a need to co-ordinate our efforts locally and Ontario is already promoting the development of local adaptation strategies to manage the impacts of our changing climate. Local strategies are necessary because one size will not fit all – there are local geographical and socio-economic realities that need to be considered in the development of adaptation responses. Some Ontario Communities are already responding.

The Almonte Communique’ was drafted and unanimously endorsed by the participants of the 2007 Almonte climate change workshop and provides the views of local residents and many organizations.

Many important economic and social decisions are being made today on long-term projects and activities in our watershed based on the assumption that past climate data are a reliable guide to the future. This is no longer a good assumption.

We believe that all levels of government are key players in this issue and must raise awareness and incorporate climate change into planning, decision making and leadership.

From Impacts towards Adaption Mississippi Watershed was written specifically for communities in this watershed but the results are generally applicable to eastern Ontario as a whole.

Download the full report:

Climate_Change_Report