Costs of Climate Change for Canada

The National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy has just released a report entitled Paying the Price: The Economic Impact of Climate Change for Canada. The report states that “Climate change will be expensive for Canada and Canadians. Increasing greenhouse gas emissions worldwide will exert a growing economic impact on our own country, exacting a rising price from Canadians as climate change impacts occur here at home.” It estimates that “Climate change costs for Canada could escalate from roughly $5 billion per year in 2020 — less than 10 years away — to between $21 billion and $43 billion per year by the 2050s.”

“The costs of climate change . . . will vary and be uneven across the country. Timber supply in Western Canada will be more affected than in the East. British Columbia’s forest-reliant economy will suffer more than many others while Ontario’s economy — due to its size — will see the largest absolute economic impact. Coastal regions across Canada are also affected differently by climate change. Relative to the total land area of each province and territory, Prince Edward Island’s coastal areas are most at risk. Many dwellings in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia are likely to be impacted given that the area is low-lying and has a high housing density, and the per capita costs of dwelling damage will be highest in British Columbia and Nunavut. Human health impacts and increased health system costs from climate change vary across the four cities we studied, with cities that experience the greatest increases in temperature — Toronto and Vancouver — experiencing the greatest impacts.”

The full report contains fairly detailed analysis on the impact of climate change on the average annual costs of climate change and its impact on forests, land area, dwellings, human health, air quality, visitor spending, and the possible distribution of costs.

The full report and an Executive Summary are available at http://nrtee-trnee.ca/climate/climate-prosperity/the-economic-impacts-of-climate-change-for-canada/paying-the-price

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