Recommendations to Inform Development of a

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Nov 6, 2013 (4 years and 1 month ago)

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Recommendations to Inform Development of a
Climate Change Adaptation Strategy for the
Lake Simcoe Watershed






Al Douglas
-

Ontario Centre for Climate Impacts and Adaptation Resources

Chris Lemieux


University of Waterloo

Gary Nielsen
-

Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources

Paul Gray
-

Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources


April 19, 2011


1

Background


Lake Simcoe


Policy 7.11 of the Lake Simcoe Protection Plan commits the Ministry of the
Environment (MOE) to develop a climate change adaptation strategy for
the Lake Simcoe watershed by June 2011, in collaboration with other
ministries and partners



The Plan states that

in order to support the development and
implementation of the climate change strategy, MOE in collaboration with
other ministries and partners will:


1.
Assess and evaluate the risk of climate change impacts on the watershed

2.
Conduct and support additional research to study the impacts of climate
change in the watershed

3.
Develop an integrated climate change monitoring program to model the
impacts of climate change on the watershed

4.
Develop climate change adaptation plans and promote the establishment of a
Lake Simcoe adaptation planning Community of Practice (CoP)



The purpose of the strategy is
to increase the resiliency of the Lake Simcoe
watershed to the impacts of climate change

2

Climate Change is a reality in the Lake Simcoe


Average global temperature has warmed by .76
°
C over the last century


During the same period, Ontario temperature changes range from O to
1.4
°
C


modelled projections indicate further air temperature increases of 1.1 to
6.4
°
C depending largely upon how humans respond to GHG emissions
issues


Enhancing the adaptive capacity of natural and built systems to respond
to changes will be important to the health and well being of people living
and working in the Lake Simcoe Watershed in the next century and
beyond

1.
Assessment of organizational readiness and where necessary improvement to
the capacity of an organization’s ability to respond.


2.
Establishment or reconfiguration of a baseline upon which to measure change
and adaptation success.


3.
Development and use of climate scenarios and socio
-
economic scenarios to help
envision future conditions.


4.
Ongoing completion of vulnerability analyses using the future scenarios to
assess strengths and weaknesses.


5.
Identification and development adaptation strategies.


6.
Implementation of the adaptation strategies.


7.
Monitoring of the strategies to evaluate success and the need for adjustment.


8.

Adjustment of the management strategies decisions where needed.



Climate Change Adaptation Plan Components

4

5

Climate
Change
Adaptation
Planning

Process

Step 1. Engage Experts and Identify Indicators


11 themes requiring adaptation measures selected



The availability of expertise had a significant bearing on the selection of
areas of inquiry for this pilot project



Experts in the natural sciences sector were were contracted to carry out
detailed vulnerability analysis based on peer reviewed research and
literature reviews



Experts in the agriculture and infrastructure themes were polled and
asked for responses based on their personal experience and knowledge


Using a guiding framework, experts assessed the vulnerability of
system components (both natural and built) to the impacts of
climate variability and climate change in the context of current
system stresses.

Step 2. Vulnerability Assessments

Natural Environment

Built Environment


-

hydrology


-

wildlife


-

vegetative cover


-

aquatic habitat


-

natural heritage

-

parks and
protected areas


-

species at risk


-

insects


-

invasive species


-

agriculture



-

transportation


-

stormwater


-

building code


-

power transmission


-

buildings


-

provincial infrastructure



MNR, Trent University, Waterloo
University

MOE, MMAH, MTO, MoI, local power
AND

communities and municipalities

8

Area of Study

Author

Affiliation

Hydrology

MacRitchie

MOE

Aquatic Habitat

Chu

Trent

U

Wildlife

Walpole and Bowman

MNR/Trent U

Species at Risk

Brinker and Jones

MNR

Invasive Species

Sager and Hicks

Trent U

Vegetative Cover

Puric
-
Mladenovic

et. Al.

MNR

Natural Heritage Areas

Lemieux et. al.

U Waterloo

Tourism

and Recreation

Lemieux et. al.

U

Waterloo

Insects

Beresford

Trent U

Agriculture

Jamieson

OMAFRA

Infrastructure

Communities,
Prov

Depts

Lake Simcoe Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment Authors

Step 2. Vulnerability Assessments (cont’d)

Infrastructure Questions for Provincial Departments


How has the
infrastructure been challenged by historic weather and climate
?
Include long term changes to means, variability and extreme events.



List
non
-
climate stressors
and state how they may have contributed to current
vulnerability. Consider land use changes, demographic/population changes,
economic changes, etc and place these in the context of the point in life cycle, age,
maintenance records, etc



Based on responses above, how has the infrastructure/system responded to climate
change? Discuss the
coping or carrying capacity of the infrastructure
.



Given current vulnerabilities and assuming that climate will continue to change what
vulnerabilities will be enhanced and
what new vulnerabilities will appear
? Consider 2
climate scenarios


low and high (defined).


Step 2. Vulnerability Assessments (cont’d)

Infrastructure Questionnaire for Municipalities


Has your community experienced any of the weather
-
related events listed below
within the last five years (with examples)? Yes
-
No
-
Not Sure



To what extent has any of the above weather
-
related events impacted your
infrastructure? Scale of 1
-
5



Indicate the extent to which the weather
-
related events will impact the various
classes of infrastructure. Scale of 1 to 5



Which of the weather
-
related events from Question 1, pose the greatest threats to
your infrastructure? List the top 3.



Step 2. Vulnerability Assessments (cont’d)

Infrastructure Questionnaire for Municipalities


Considering the list of infrastructure, please indicate to what extent will these non
-
climate stressors impact the system. Scale of 1
-
5



If climate continues to change (long term changes to average, variability and
extremes), will the classes of infrastructure become more or less vulnerable?



Are there specific locations where infrastructure is all ready vulnerable to current
weather hazards (e.g. does the same location flood each time there is a heavy rain
event, etc.)?



Does your community intend to develop and implement mechanisms (adaptation)
to reduce climate
-
related risks? No, Yes within 1 year, Possibly within 2
-
3 years,
Possibly within 4
-
6 years, Not Sure


Step 2. Vulnerability Assessments (cont’d)

12

Communities Information Meeting


A brief overview of climate change, sample historic climate trends and
projections of climate (temp and precipitation);



(Vulnerability) questions similar to those in the survey were presented;



Sought specific community vulnerabilities;



Received some comments on adaptive measures and comments about
process impediments.



Step 2. Vulnerability Assessments (cont’d)

Step 3. Project Future Scenarios


Changes in climate will have major implications for composition,
structure and function of ecosystems for the Lake Simcoe Watershed


Built infrastructure will be similarly challenged

14



All vulnerability information is posted on

www.climateOntario.ca/LakeSimcoeDelphi.php


Using the questions that were developed for the breakout session at the
Lake Simcoe forum in November 2010 AND



Using the Policy Delphi method as the basis for expert input, the
planning team developed the questions to populate the on
-
line Delphi
questionnaire.


Step 4. Project Future Vulnerability

Overview of Policy Delphi Process


Iterative group
-
oriented Idea Generating Strategy (IGS)
that seeks to generate the strongest possible opposing
views on the potential resolutions of a major policy
issue



Participants are afforded the freedom to present and
challenge alternative viewpoints, and to think
reflectively and independently between iterations

Chris Lemieux, University of Waterloo

15

Step 5. Develop a Method to generate adaptation
ideas


Policy Delphi selected for Lake Simcoe

Advantages of the Delphi Method


Overcomes limitations of other IGSs, including:



one or a few vocal individuals to dominate the discussion


people to remain silent, possibly due to shyness or fear of
censure


the ‘rut effect’ (i.e., participants getting hung
-
up on one
thought and staying in that rut for the duration of the
meeting)


the power of persuasion and the ‘bandwagon’ effect


the unwillingness to abandon ‘norms’


geographic isolation


cost

Chris Lemieux, University of Waterloo

16

17

18

Lake Simcoe Policy Delphi Process


Electronic survey was used for the two rounds of questions



First round provided survey participants with the climate change vulnerability
reports prepared by the scientists, including the list of three primary
consequences of climate change



Survey contained 11 questions organized according to seven general
categories:
legislation and policy, strategic planning, land use and/or resource
management planning, management and operations, monitoring, research,
and knowledge dissemination (communication)



Recommendations generated by the Nov 24/25 workshop breakout groups
and the first
-
round Delphi survey were used to develop a synthesized suite of
adaptation options for each of the 11 themes.



These recommendations were then evaluated in the second
-
round survey for
their perceived priority and feasibility (affordability and ease of
implementation)

19

Sample Questions from Policy Delphi Phase I

1) Legislation and Policy


What types of policies are required to provide for an adaptive
approach to decision
-
making?

2) Strategic Planning


What short
-

and long
-
term strategic planning is required to
support the vision of the
Lake Simcoe Protection Plan?

3) Increasing Knowledge


What types of information and forms of knowledge are
required to support robust and flexible decision
-
making?



11 questions in total across 7 themes

Adaptation Report


pg. 31

Policy Delphi Phase II Evaluation Criteria

20

21


74 individuals were invited to participate in the first round of the policy Delphi
survey



20 did not feel qualified to answer the questions.



of the 54 participants, 43 (84%) responded



of the 43 respondents to the first
-
round survey, 39 (88%) completed the
second round survey



8 agricultural experts and practitioners provided advice to the agricultural
representative who completed the first
-
round survey



16 municipal representatives completed the infrastructure survey



16 municipal representatives from 8 communities attended the February face
-
to
-
face meeting to further discuss community vulnerabilities.

Participant Response Rate

Recommendations

All themes except infrastructure


more than
900 recommendations
were submitted by the 43 respondents to
the first
-
round survey



planning team reviewed the 900 recommendations, eliminated redundancies,
and redrafted 695 recommendations in a consistent format for use in the
second
-
round survey



with the ranking system developed for the round
-
two survey, first
-
order or
high priority adaptation options were identified



in total, 92 recommendations were identified as first
-
order priority and an
additional 48 recommendations were identified as first
-

or second
-
order
priorities



First
-
order priority recommendations are:

22

First Order Priority Recommendations
(sample)

STRATEGIC PLANNING



The implementation of all recommendations in the
Lake Simcoe Protection Plan will


significantly improve the environmental health and ecological resilience of the
Watershed to the impacts of climate change.



Develop a comprehensive terrestrial and aquatic natural heritage area system containing
large core areas and exhibiting high connectivity throughout the Watershed in order to:

o
Enhance the resilience of ecosystems and species under changing climatic
conditions;

o
Ensure the persistence of species at risk; and,

o
Facilitate species response to climate change.



Develop a
Lake Simcoe Climate Change Adaptation Plan that includes quantified targets
and
objectives for socio
-
economic and ecological conditions that are resilient to the
impacts of climate change.


23

First Order Priority Recommendations
(sample)

LEGISLATION and POLICY



Climate change should be integrated into species at risk
assessments and
Species at Risk Act
(SARA) recovery strategies.



The
Provincial Policy Statement (PPS) should be revised to include
protection for all
representative habitat types, not just wetlands.



Develop a tourism promotion policy that includes adaptive
management principles in order to contribute to the local
economy and respond to the needs of recreationists without
compromising the sustainability of the natural assets of the
Watershed in a rapidly changing climate.



Conduct a review of current official plans and associated policies in
all 52 municipalities to determine how well they serve to protect
remaining woodlands and wetlands.





24

First Order Priority Recommendations
(sample)

KNOWLEDGE MANAGEMENT: Research



Complete a spatial and quantitative analysis of the greenways and blueways that will be
delineated and protected under the auspices of a fully implemented
Lake Simcoe
Protection Plan and determine if these areas provide optimal connectivity to mitigate
climate change
Impacts



Complete research on ecologically and socially meaningful planning objectives or targets
for terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.



Carry out the research necessary to be able to explicitly define and describe “resilient
ecosystems” in the context of climate change.



Conduct an assessment of the risk associated with the movement of wood products (e.g.,
trends in firewood use) as disturbance vectors (e.g., Emerald Ash Borer, Asian Long Horn
Beetle, 1000 Canker Disease, and Butternut Canker) for the potential impact on natural
and urban forests.




25

First Order Priority Recommendations
(sample)

KNOWLEDGE MANAGEMENT: Monitoring



Implement all monitoring programs developed as part of the
Lake Simcoe Protection
Plan
(i.e., water chemistry, nutrient load, flooding, ground water, land
-
use change,
tracking of best management practices, atmospheric monitoring and fish population
indicators in the lake, stream monitoring of fish and invertebrates at sites throughout
the watershed) and enhance monitoring programs with climate change indicators.



In collaboration with health officials, develop a climate impact human health and well
-
being surveillance system that tracks and reports on heat stress, vector and water borne
diseases, extreme weather threats, and other health and well
-
being related impacts.



Institute standardized sampling to monitor distribution and abundance of Species at Risk
(absolute and relative) on a regular basis across in the Lake Simcoe watershed and the
rest of Ontario.



Target species that are most common to the region and known to be sensitive to change.

26

First Order Priority Recommendations
(sample)

KNOWLEDGE MANAGEMENT: Inventory



Commit to updating land
-
use and land cover mapping on a
regular basis using new technologies, such as remote
sensing.



Carry out a comprehensive, fine
-
scale vegetation inventory
for the Watershed.



Design and implement a data collection process to gather
vegetative cover data using state of the art remote sensing,
GIS techniques, and ground plots.



Employ tools and techniques that permit planning teams to
complete integrated assessments (e.g., GIS overlay
mapping) for the sustainable allocation of ecological goods
and services at the Watershed scale.




27

First Order Priority Recommendations
(sample)

KNOWLEDGE MANAGEMENT: Dissemination (Communication)



Develop a climate change education strategy that will provide local examples of future
scenarios, vulnerabilities, and impacts to better link adaptation and mitigation actions
with communities located within the Watershed.



Create demonstration sites at specific locations within the Watershed (e.g., natural
heritage areas and other tourism locations) to educate visitors on climate change impacts
and sustainable responses (e.g., energy efficiency).



Use the term “Green Infrastructure” to convey the concept that healthy and functional
natural systems are required all around us to sustain human social and economic
systems.



Ensure that community engagement is built into all climate change and adaptation
related planning in the watershed.




28

First Order Priority Recommendations
(sample)

ON
-
SITE PLANNING and MANAGEMENT



Develop emergency management strategies that help communities and businesses
prepare for increased flooding, drought, and erosion due to more frequent extreme
weather events in the Watershed.



Develop and implement Watershed
-
wide water conservation strategies to decrease
water demand and use.



Tree planting initiatives should be promoted by all levels of government to improve air
quality, conserve water, regulate climate, save energy, provide habitat, and improve
economic sustainability.



Integrate use of climate change scenarios and vulnerability assessments into land
-
use
plans and resource management plans, including but not limited to nutrient
management plans, municipal official plans, fisheries management plans, wildlife
management plans, and forest management plans.


29

First Order Priority Recommendations
(sample)

ENABLERS (including PRINCIPLES)



Adaptive management should be a principle embedded in all climate change related
planning.



The Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) and Ministry of Environment (MOE) need to
improve interagency communication and cooperation to ensure water quality and
quantity are protected and ecosystem health and resilience are enhanced in a rapidly
changing climate.



Adapting to climate change will require increased levels of collaboration and cooperation
at many levels, including between agencies, between different levels of management
with agencies; and, between themes and sectors. This needs to be made explicit in the
design of policy, strategic plans, work plans and project charters.



Achieving the consensus required to move forward on climate change adaptation
programs will require the design a specific process to engage and include local
communities in the development of adaptation policies, frameworks, and plans.


30

Recommendations for Infrastructure
(sample)


Develop an inventory of current infrastructure to measure baseline conditions,
performance and capacity constraints.



Develop guidelines and policy to encourage and support the use of rainwater capture and
reuse technology at houses and other buildings.



Integrate stormwater master planning into the
Planning Act.



Make every effort to mimic the natural environment when planning and/or retrofitting
subdivisions.

31



What have we heard from you?

How has your input been used?

32

On
the results



+
generated 900+ adaptation recommendations



+ common themes to the recommendations



+ many recommendations are beneficial to more

than one sector


-

uneven distribution of respondents (expertise)



-

insufficient community responses


On
the process



-

too many questions, not enough time, not the


right expertise, ill
-
informed, no room for input on


questions, etc.

Post Adaptation Report
-

Workshop

33

Many of the experts who participated in the process invited to
hear results and provide feedback


1.
Process


feedback will help us refine the process to make it
better.


2.
Review and comment on adaptation options .


3.
What is missing from the report?


4.
How can the strategy be moved forward with the respective
delivery agents (municipalities, CA, Province, others)?


5.
What barriers stand in the way to building resiliency in the
watershed
?


6.
Also included discussion of an adaptation template and
options for the layout/structure of the CCA strategy.

Recommendations for Future Strategic Assessment

(Hindsight)


Use ensemble of climate models and scenarios when possible



Engage stakeholders and experts early and substantively



Scope needs to be comprehensive and include regional, national and
international influances



Ensure the appropriate expertise (capacity) is in place



Allow adequate time to participate in climate change adaptation planning



Provide incentives to participants



Improve the capacity of the online
-
survey engine



Engage communities



Assessments of risks


34

An Adaptive Management Framework

Step 1


Establish Baselines:

Climate

Flora

Fauna

Step 2


Develop

Scenarios for:

Climate

Socio
-
economics

Step 3


Assess Vulnerability


of Natural Assets

and Human Society


to Climate Change

Step 4



Identify and Evaluate

Adaptation Options

Step 5



Implement

Adaptation Options

Step 6


Monitor for Change

And

Adapt as Needed

P. Gray, MNR, 2011

We are here

June
-
August
2010

September
-

October
2010

September


November
2010

December
2010


March 2011

May 2011

July 2011

36

Thank you