What is climate resiliency?

    Resiliency is our ability to cope with change. Climate resiliency is how prepared we are for climate conditions now and in the future. These conditions may include extreme weather such as heavy rains or windstorms, gradual shifts in temperature, rain and snow and consequences from these such as wildfires, floods or droughts. It is different from climate change mitigation which refers to our efforts to limit climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Energy Evolution is our strategy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

    What is an emission scenario?

    In climate modelling, scientists use a range of emission scenarios that describe how greenhouse gas emissions could evolve between now and 2100. The Climate Projections for the National Capital Region report looked at moderate to high emission scenarios for three time periods (2030s, 2050s and 2080s). The Executive Summary provides an overview of the projections for the moderation emissions scenario.

    The rate and magnitude of climate change will depend on future global greenhouse gas emissions. Significant global action is required to reduce emissions below the high emission scenario.

    We’re in a climate emergency – shouldn’t our focus be on reducing greenhouse gas emissions and preventing further climate change?

    City Council declared a climate emergency in April 2019. As outlined in the Climate Change Master Plan, we need to act on two fronts: 

    • Reduce our contribution to climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions 
    • Reduce the impact of climate change on Ottawa 

    The City has set an ambitious target to reduce Ottawa’s emissions by 100 per cent by 2050. Energy Evolution is the City’s strategy and action plan to meet this target and transition to renewable energy. 

    What can residents, businesses and organizations do to prepare for climate change?

    Everyone can take steps to prepare for a changing climate. Key actions include:

    • Protect your home from flooding by installing a backwater valve, re-directing your downspout onto grass or gardens and planting a tree which will also provide shade
    • Stay healthy during extreme heat events by following guidance from Ottawa Public Health 
    • Protect yourself from ticks by wearing long pants, using DEET and doing tick checks when outdoors in wooded areas or areas with tall grasses
    • Drain standing water to reduce the building grounds for the mosquitoes that may carry West Nile virus and apply an approved mosquito repellent
    • Develop an emergency preparedness plan and kit

    Find out more about what you can do to prepare for climate change.


    What is the City already doing to adapt to climate change?

    Many City departments work together to understand and reduce the impacts of climate change. 

    For example, building infrastructure such as roads and sewers so they are more resilient to future climate conditions, and growing Ottawa’s urban forest. The City has an Emergency Management Plan to prepare and respond during a major emergency and Environmental Health warning and response programs to reduce illnesses and deaths associated with extreme weather.   

    Find out more about what the City is already doing to adapt to climate change