State of Climate Adaptation - Regional District of Central Kootenay Area J - Full Report 2017

Welcome to the Regional District of Central Kootenay Area J’s 2017 baseline report for the State of Climate Adaptation and Resilience in the Basin (SoCARB) indicator suite. The SoCARB indicator suite measures community progress on climate adaptation across five climate impact pathways: extreme weather and emergency preparedness, wildfire, water supply, flooding, and agriculture. SoCARB indicators were designed to provide data and insights relating to climate change, including local environmental impacts and community impacts (e.g., economic impacts), as well as information to help build adaptive capacity and track local actions.

This report summarizes the results of an analysis of SoCARB indicators for Area J, and has been prepared as part of a two-year Columbia Basin Rural Development Institute (RDI) pilot project to test and refine the SoCARB indicator suite in communities across the Columbia Basin-Boundary region. This project is partially funded by the Real Estate Foundation of British Columbia.

Climate-related events like flooding, drought, and higher temperatures can be critical events for communities. Flooding poses a risk to water infrastructure and contributes to turbidity in surface sources. Drought has implications for water supply, local food production and increasing wildfire risk. Higher temperatures can impact vulnerable populations, including the elderly, socially isolated, chronically ill, and infants.

The information presented in this report is intended to highlight trends, changes, and impacts to the local climate and surrounding environment, and to inform local planning and decision-making. This includes changes in indicators outside of the Regional District’s jurisdiction such as glacier extent and wildfire starts, recognizing that a better understanding of trends associated with these indicators can help the community prepare for current and future changes. For other indicators, like 72-hour emergency preparedness and per capita water consumption, for example, local governments are better positioned to identify and track where their actions could increase community climate resilience.

Not all 58 SoCARB indicators are reported here. Indicators that Area J has not identified as a priority, as well as all indicators from SoCARB’s Community Resilience Index (see page 2), have been excluded. Some indicators may be updated annually as part of the Regional District’s annual reporting, while others may be updated over a longer time scale as time and resources allow.

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