April 23, 2010
BAYFIELD (CNB) - New Brunswick, the other Atlantic provinces and the federal government announced today joint funding of $8.2 million to help communities in this region adapt to climate change.
The three-year initiative, called the Atlantic Climate Adaptation Solutions Project, is aimed at helping the Atlantic provinces target local issues such as coastal erosion, flooding and groundwater resource management.
"New Brunswick is proud to have led the development of the Atlantic Climate Adaptation Solutions Project in collaboration with our colleagues and partners," said Environment Minister Rick Miles. "Adapting to a changing climate is a critical issue for many Atlantic communities, and by working together, we will build the tools and necessary resources to support decision makers in addressing these issues."
The project will involve 64 partners across the Atlantic region in local projects. They will include federal, provincial and municipal governments, industry, academia and Aboriginal and non-governmental organizations.
"We must work together to increase our ability to address the impacts of a changing climate," said National Revenue Minister Keith Ashfield, who is also the minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency and minister for the Atlantic Gateway. "Making adaptation-focused decisions now will help our economy, communities and natural resources prepare for climate change impacts in the future."
Natural Resources Canada will contribute $3.5 million to help communities integrate climate change adaptation considerations into community plans, engineering practices, and water and resource decisions.
"The provinces of Atlantic Canada share a common challenge in dealing with the impacts of climate change," said Richard Brown, minister of environment, energy and forestry, Prince Edward Island. "Today's announcement brings us together in an approach that helps this entire region."
The announcement took place at the Cape Jourimain Interpretive Centre at the foot of the Confederation Bridge in Bayfield. The centre overlooks Northumberland Strait, on which some of the most vulnerable communities to climate change in Atlantic Canada are located.
"Communities in Atlantic Canada are already experiencing serious impacts during extreme weather events," said Sterling Belliveau, minister of environment, Nova Scotia. "This investment will provide much needed guidance to allow our region to adapt to a changing climate."
The solutions developed through these projects will be shared nationally to help Canadian communities become well-positioned to make appropriate decisions as the climate changes.
"The impacts of climate change are evident across the country, particularly when we look at the elevated temperatures and lack of precipitation associated with this past winter," said Charlene Johnson, minister of environment and conservation, Newfoundland and Labrador. "The cumulative efforts of these projects within the Atlantic provinces will certainly help us do our part to address the effects of climate change."
More information about the Atlantic Climate Adaptation Solutions Project: www.gnb.ca/climatechange.
MEDIA CONTACTS: Jennifer Graham, public affairs, Department of Environment, 506-453-3700; Margaux Stastny, director of communications, Office of the Minister of Natural Resources Canada, 613-996-2007; Media relations, Natural Resources of Canada, 613-992-4447.