The Town of Oakville was awarded ICLEI's Milestone 5 of its Building Adaptive and Resilient Communities (BARC) program for the endorsement and implementation of the town-wide climate change strategy in September of 2016. This achievement places the town at the forefront of municipalities in Canada working to address climate change.
Milestone 1 and 2 were completed in 2011 and 2012 while Milestone 3 was awarded upon the endorsement of a formal adaptation strategy which was received by Council on September 22, 2014. Milestone 4 was awarded in 2015 for having completed one year of implementation while Milestone 5 was presented to the town at the Livable Cities Conference in September of 2016 for being 1 of only 4 municipalities in Canada to have an endorsed Climate Change Strategy and over 2 full years of implementation.
Once the climatic changes and impacts were projected, town staff worked to identify what actions could be taken by both staff and residents that would help to achieve the vision and objectives of this adaptation initiative.
When discussing the issue of climate change the terms mitigation and adaptation are used frequently.
Climate change mitigation refers to the promotion of policy, regulatory and project-based measures that contribute to the stabilization or reduction of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere. Renewable energy programs, energy efficiency frameworks and the substitution of fossil fuels are examples of climate change mitigation measures.
The town has been taking inventory of our greenhouse gas emissions and has implemented the following climate change mitigation programs:
Climate change adaptation includes any initiatives or actions in response to actual or projected climate change impacts that reduce the effects of climate change on built, natural and social systems. Preparing for climate change adaptation does not negate the need to support and implement mitigation measures, it is just another method of dealing with the climatic change impacts. The town's Climate Change Adaptation Strategy highlights over 300 actions the corporation can research, develop or implement to help adapt to our changing climate.
Oakville's Changing Climate, this table provides an overview of the observed and projected climatic changes in Oakville. All data, unless otherwise referenced is drawn from Environment Canada, Climate Ontario, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and from the Canadian Climate Change Scenarios Networks (CCCSN) Localizer Report.
To find out what you can do to increase your personal resilience to our changing climate and protect yourself, your home, family and property visit Oakville's Climate Change Primer and attend the town's annual Keep Calm and Adapt - Emergency and Extreme Weather Preparedness event.