RESILIENCE AND ADAPTATION TO CLIMATE CHANGE: EXPERT TESTIMONY PRESENTED TO THE SENATE OF CANADA - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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RESILIENCE AND ADAPTATION TO CLIMATE CHANGE: EXPERT TESTIMONY PRESENTED TO THE SENATE OF CANADA

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Title: RESILIENCE AND ADAPTATION TO CLIMATE CHANGE: EXPERT TESTIMONY PRESENTED TO THE SENATE OF CANADA


1
RESILIENCE AND ADAPTATION TO CLIMATE CHANGE
EXPERT TESTIMONY PRESENTED TO THE SENATE OF
CANADA
  • BY Mohammed Dore, Brock University CWN

2
Abstract
  • This testimony covers (a) the impact of Climate
    change and natural hazards and (b) the threat
    posed by the use of coal and its vast reserves in
    three countries that control over 80 percent of
    the coal reserves. On adaptation, I argue that
    the main impact of climate change is likely to be
    on Canadian water resources. Such impacts could
    compromise Canadas ability to meet the need of
    its citizens with safety and security.

3
Objectives
  1. To complement other testimony, so that I do not
    repeat what the Committee has already heard
  2. To persuade Senate, because only Senate can take
    a long-term view of the well-being of Canadians
  3. To concentrate on my own research and expertise
  4. To leave you with a short list of policy
    priorities

4
Two Premises
  1. I would like to persuade you that water is a
    rural resource.
  2. The main impact of climate change on Canada is
    likely to be on its water resources.

5
Climate Change Natural Hazards
  • You will note that geophysical disasters have
    been stationary over the last hundred years but
    Hydrometeorological disasters have been rising
    from about 1942.

6
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7
Some Summary Facts
  • The most important GHGs are Carbon Dioxide
    (CO2), Methane (CH4) and Nitrous Oxide (N2O) and
    CFCs.
  • CH4 from past emissions contributes 20
  • N2O, other industrial gases and ODS contribute
    20 (CFCs are stabilizing under MP)
  • CO2 is currently responsible for over 60 of the
    enhanced greenhouse effect

8
Summary Facts, contd
  • Current annual emissions amount to over 23
    billion metric tons of CO2 or 1 of the total
    mass of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere
  • CO2 levels appear to have varied by less that 10
    during the 10,000 years before industrialization
    - in the last 200 years levels have risen by over
    30
  • Even with half the emissions absorbed by oceans
    and vegetation levels, CO2 levels will rise by
    greater than 10 every 20 years
  • Some 77 percent of the annual carbon emitted into
    the atmosphere is from the burning of fossil-
    fuels

9
World Carbon Accounts
  • Reservoir Gt C
  • Atmosphere 750
  • Forest 610
  • Soils 1580
  • Oceans 39120
  • Fossil-fuels
  • Coal 4000
  • Oil 500
  • Natural gas 500
  • TOTAL FOSSIL-FUEL 5000

10
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11
Who wields the biggest threat of global warming?
  • Just three countries have 82 of the worlds
    coal
  • China 13
  • USA 24
  • Russia, Ukraine
  • Kazakistan 45
  • Share of World 82

12
Policy Consideration
  • Current political and economic influences mean
    that the use of coal is likely to rise, possibly
    even in Canada.
  • The use of coal is most likely to increase in
    developing countries
  • A key priority at the next amendment under UN
    FCCC (of say the Kyoto Protocol, or its
    successor) should be focused on discouraging the
    mining and use of coal.

13
Climate Change Water
  • We used CGCM1-GG1 climate change model for
    predicting changes in climate variables.
  • The model gives precipitation projections that do
    not take local features into account, and hence
    downscaling is carried out which incorporates
    locational features particular to the region.
  • We illustrate by using Niagara as a case study.
  • The main impact in Niagara is expected to be on
    wastewater.

14
Precipitation Projections
  • CGCM1-GG1 Proportional Downscaled
    Precipitation Statistics for Niagara in
    Millimeters, Monthly Average Data

1961-2099 1961-1990 2010-2039 2040-2069 2070-2099
Maximum 1310.92 247.5 1310.92 933.93 881
Minimum 3.61 12.9 6.45 3.61 6.75
Mean 104.33 88.58 110 105.25 113.49
Standard Deviation 89.44 37.11 114.04 92.01 94.07
15
Precipitation Projections (continued)
  • The table indicates that there is an increase in
    the precipitation mean as well as an increase in
    its variance.
  • Maximum precipitation, a variable that reflects
    extreme events also increases dramatically from
    the baseline period.
  • By 2040, the mean could rise by 6 and the
    standard deviation by 28 from the baseline
    period.
  • We find that 118mm precipitation in a single
    month will force the treatment plants to operate
    at 100.
  • Precipitation beyond 118mm a month will cause
    storm water to overflow into the ecosystem, and
    wastewater treatment capacity will have to be
    expanded.
  • Such a critical capacity is shown in each of the
    following graphs, along with the mean and the 95
    confidence interval for precipitation for
    1961-2099

16

Figure 1 Results for Niagara (1961-1990)
17
Figure 2 Results for Niagara (2010-2039)
18
Figure 3 Results for Niagara (2040-2069)
19
Figure 4 Results for Niagara (2070-2099)  
20
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21
Impacts on Wastewater Infrastructure
  • The precipitation projections outlined will have
    noticeable impact on all of the systems, but most
    significantly on areas with combined sewer
    systems.
  • Systems include some older areas with combined
    sewers and areas developed later with separated
    sewers.
  • Combined sewers are designed for both sanitary or
    sewage flow and storm water.
  • Combined systems are directly impacted by high
    precipitation due to storm runoff.

22
Impact of Climate Change on Wastewater
Infrastructure (continued)
  • With combined sewers, wet weather flow and peak
    flow conditions can easily exceed the capacity of
    the transport system resulting in surcharge
    conditions or basement backups.
  • Combined sewer overflows (CSOs) are designed to
    reduce risks.
  • CSOs are of prime concern as they release water
    pollutants to natural environment.

23
Impact of Climate Change on Wastewater
Infrastructure (continued)
  • Another critical issue with respect to water
    pollution is by-passing of flow at wastewater
    treatment plants.
  • High wastewater flows during precipitation and
    spring runoff result in both CSO and by-passes.

24
Impact of Climate Change on Wastewater
Infrastructure (continued)
  • As a result of an increase in the projected
    precipitation, it is estimated that the design
    capacity will increase from 32 to 47.
  • The storage control costs will also increase from
    the present needs by an estimated 54 to 80
    million.
  • The total cost (storage treatment) for the
    wastewater infrastructure will be between 74
    million to 110 million.

25
Indirect Impacts of Climate Change on Wastewater
Infrastructure (continued)
  • Variability in precipitation has pronounced
    impact on water supply.
  • Niagaras water demands are a mix of domestic,
    tourists, industrial, commercial, institutional
    and agricultural needs.
  • Vineyard, tender fruit and greenhouse operations
    in north Niagara, create peak water demand
    conditions in the summer.
  • Prolonged hot, dry summers result in increased
    peak water system demands

26
Capability to Adapt to Climate Change
  • In order to adapt to climate change, Niagara will
    need the financial resources to increase its
    capacity to process wastewater, mostly stormwater
    due to increased precipitation in eastern Canada,
    as a consequence of global climate change.
  •  Indeed it is the lowest level of the government
    that now faces the most severe challenges, thanks
    to the process of downloading.

27
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28
Adaptation at the Local Level
  • We can see from the above chart that the
    municipalities are in no position to respond to
    the challenges of climate change. If the
    Government of Canada wishes to increase the
    adaptability of Canadians, then action must be
    taken where the adaptation expenditures are most
    likely to be required. For water, those
    adaptations must be made at the local municipal
    water and wastewater utility. If in addition, you
    are persuaded with the recommendations of the
    IPCC to follow a no regrets policy then the
    Government must enhance the resilience of
    Canadian infrastructure.

29
Conclusions
  • 1.     Hydrometeorological disasters are
    increasing in Canada, and their severity is
    likely to increase too, imposing huge damages on
    the Canadian public infrastructure and private
    property. Senate may wish to consider increasing
    funding for the natural hazard portion of OCIPEP.
    Funding for research into the connection between
    climate change and increased Hydrometeorological
    disasters should also be considered.

30
Conclusions, contd.
  •    2. Canada should draw the attention of the
    international community that the next
    negotiations on a revision of an international
    protocol under the UN FCCC, should focus of the
    global threat from the mining and use of coal, so
    that some early action on discouraging the use of
    coal is put in place soon.

31
Conclusions contd
  • 3. To increase the resilience of Canada and
    Canadian infrastructure, funding must be directed
    where is it most needed, but where the fiscal
    capacity is also the lowest, thanks to
    downloading. The lowest fiscal capacity is at the
    municipal level.
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