Sub-activity 3.1.3

Forest Disturbances Science and Application


Climate change is widely believed to be contributing to an increase in the frequency and intensity of native and invasive alien forest pest infestations and other disturbances such as wildland fire. Canada needs the scientific knowledge to understand, forecast, mitigate and adapt to natural and human-induced impacts to forest ecosystems. Through this sub activity, NRCan conducts research and analysis to develop scientific knowledge of forest disturbances (e.g., pests, fire). This scientific knowledge is used by federal, provincial and territorial governments and agencies (both policy-makers and regulators) as well as the forest industry to assess risks, forecast impacts and develop mitigation and adaptation strategies related to pests, fire, and climate change. This sub activity includes the Invasive Alien Species Strategy for Canada.

Non-Financial Performance Information
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Status Results
Increased use of scientific knowledge of forest disturb- ances by govern- ments, agencies and industry Represent- ation of the Canadian Forest Service on forest disturbances advisory boards or committees involving stakeholders Maintain current representation (baseline to be established June 30, 2012) by March 31, 2013 To be provided in the corresponding DPR To be provided in the corresponding DPR
Percentage of peer-reviewed disturbances publications cited over a rolling 5-year period Stay within 10% of baseline (baseline to be established June 30, 2012) by March 31, 2013 To be provided in the corresponding DPR To be provided in the corresponding DPR
Financial Performance Information ($ thousands)
Planned Spending Total Authorities Actual Spending
28,015 28,015 To be provided in the corresponding DPR

Program Name: Enhancing Competitiveness in a Changing Climate

CAA Theme: Adaptation Theme

Description of Enhancing Competitiveness in a Changing Climate:

NRCan’s enhancing Competitiveness in a Changing Climate program involves activities in the Earth Sciences Sector (under sub-activity 3.1.4), the Minerals and Metals Sector (under sub-activity 2.2.1) and the Canadian Forest Service (under sub-activity 3.1.3). The activities for this program for each sector are described below:

Earth Sciences Sector (ESS) Climate Change Impact and Adaptation (CCIAD)

Successfully planning for and managing the impacts of climate change requires not only the exploration of the risks and opportunities created by a changing climate but also information sharing and co-operation among multiple levels of decision-makers. This program will deliver an Adaptation Platform to bring together national industry associations, national professional organizations, representatives from federal, provincial and territorial governments, as well as other relevant organizations to address shared adaptation priorities. The Adaptation Platform will enhance the competitiveness of regions and key industries by providing a structure to bring together knowledge, capacity and financial resources from across Canada to produce information and tools regions and key industries need to understand and adapt to the effects of a changing climate on their operations.

Minerals and Metals Sector (MMS) Project on Mine Waste Management in a Changing Climate

Climatic warming in the North poses new challenges to various mining-related activities, especially mine waste management and effluent treatment. Relying on available and proven technologies without exploring new alternatives is inadequate to efficiently tackle the pending challenges. As part of a larger departmental program on Climate Change Impacts and Adaptation, CANMET-MMSL is assessing the current mine waste management and effluent treatment practices in the North with respect to their ability to accommodate the impacts of extreme climatic events. The work focuses on northern mining vulnerability, examining operations, development and reclamation projects, as well as researching potential adaptation options.

Canadian Forest Service (CFS) Climate Change Impact and Adaptation

The Canadian Forest Service is building a national framework to integrate existing and new scientific information and enable the integrated assessment of the implications of climate change for Canada’s forest sector. The program includes developing a set of indicators of climate change impacts on forests and the forest sector, and implementing a system to track and report on them. A toolkit of useful and actionable information and tools to inform operational, strategic and policy decisions on adaptation and to enhance forest sector capacity to mitigate climate change impacts is being developed in close collaboration with Canada’s forest sector.

Expected program results for 2012-13:

NRCan’s Enhancing Competitiveness in a Changing Climate program will deliver information and share expertise to improve the ability of decision-makers in Canada’s regions and targeted economic sectors to adapt. The Earth Sciences Sector will establish an Adaptation Platform to bring together knowledge, capacity and financial resources to efficiently and effectively facilitate adaptation action. In 2012-13 it will establish a series of working groups that will address topics such as coastal management, economic analysis, and measuring progress on adaptation. The Mining and Metals Sector will deliver a report and a technical seminar to improve knowledge on the climate change impacts on mine waste management and effluent treatment in the North and offer practical adaptation technologies. The Canadian Forest Service will deliver a prioritization framework for indicators of climate change impacts, will develop an initial adaptation toolkit, and will start reporting results of its tracking system. In 2012-13, the program will also identify the areas of focus and the methodology for its integrated assessment.