Telling the Weather Story:
Can Canada Manage the Storms Ahead?

Managing the storms ahead with good research

Stormy weather is hitting Canadians hard. Consider the following:

  • In 2005 Toronto saw record damages from flooded basements as sewers backed up from too much rain (cost: $500 million).
  • Go west and they’ll tell you about severe hailstorms damaging crops and denting cars in Calgary in July 2010 (cost: $400 million).
  • And then there was the ice storm in Quebec in 1998. More than 3,000 transmission towers collapsed and millions of people were without power (cost:  $5.4 billion).

In short, severe weather is jeopardizing lives, property and livelihoods. And it isn’t getting better. Losses from natural catastrophes in Canada are rising. Claim payouts from severe weather have doubled every five to ten years since the 1980s.

For years, IBC has played a leadership role in conducting research and developing sound strategies to help Canadians protect themselves [e.g., the Dry House interactive display and iPad app]. Because sound research into severe weather trends is critical, IBC commissioned Dr. Gordon McBean – one of Canada’s foremost climatologists – to research climate trends in Canada. The goal of the research is to understand the role of severe weather in the increasing damages to personal and commercial properties.

This research will help IBC work with Canadians to manage the stormy weather ahead.

Note: Dr. Gordon McBean was a lead author and review editor for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The IPCC was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007. He is currently a professor at the University of Western Ontario where he teaches courses on Environmental Policy and Environmental Hazards.

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