The Tantramar area of southeast New Brunswick is among the most vulnerable regions in the province to the impacts of climate change, in particular flooding. 2014 and 2015 saw major flood events, which cut off major routes for a number of days, and flooded many basements and businesses, causing damage that insurance will not cover. There is an ever-increasing and urgent need to prepare local residents for the impacts of climate change and to take action to protect property. The public in Tantramar is becoming more aware of the issues but more education and outreach are needed on a continuing basis. EOS hosted a very popular public session on preparing for flooding in Tantramar in November 2014. From this, a number of actions were noted including the need to share information with more of the public, to create community-based adaptation plans, and finally to coordinate a bulk purchase of adaptation items such as backwater valves and 72 hour emergency kits, to help decrease the cost of these expensive items while increasing homeowners’ adaptability and safety.
The current project sought to address all of the above recommendations and more. This final report outlines the project goals, methodology and activities including a public climate change adaptation survey, community adaptation plans, coordination of the Tantramar Climate Change Adaptation Collaborative, education and outreach such as Climate Change Week, and finally bulk purchase programs. It concludes with results and recommendations for the future.
The goals of the project were to:
1. Raise awareness about the local impacts of climate change and related adaptation options in Tantramar among the public and decision makers.
2. Create community-based formal climate change adaptation plans for Tantramar- Memramcook communities.
3. Take action and prepare for climate change impacts (such as flooding) with a bulk purchase of sump-pumps and backwater valves for residents across Tantramar-Memramcook.
The project was successful and produced the following key results:
• Increased understanding of climate change impacts, adaptation and the need for emergency preparedness among the public.
• A community-based adaptation plan for Port Elgin.
• A corporate climate change adaptation plan for the Town of Sackville.
• 115 households better prepared for storms and emergencies due to the emergency kit bulk purchase.
• A bulk purchase of sump pumps was offered. EOS Eco-Energy Inc. – 2016 3
• Increased understanding of the latest freshwater and coastal flooding issues on the Chignecto Isthmus among the Tantramar Cliamte Change Adaptation Collaborative, including local municipal decision-makers.
In conclusion, climate change adaptation is progressing in the Tantramar region as a result of our project. Our recommendations for next steps include an adaptation plan for the Village of Dorchester, Tantramar Climate Change Week 2017, updating and reviewing the Tantramar Climate Change Adaptation Collaborative’s original action plan, innovative educational Youtube videos, adding flood preparation resources to our website, and sharing our best practices for community-based adaptation projects with other New Brunswick NGOs as a way to foster more adaptation champions across the province and advance adaptation at the community level.
Read the full report: Climate Change Adaptation Planning Final Report Feb 2016 – sm