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Canada in a Changing Climate: National Issues report

As Canada faces ongoing climate change, it’s important to have a national perspective on the effects it has on our communities, environment and economy, as well as on how we’re adapting. 

This report focuses on climate change themes that are nationally important and that benefit from an integrated, pan-Canadian perspective. Read it if you want to know more about Canada’s key vulnerabilities regarding climate change, the specific risks and challenges we face, Indigenous knowledge and perspectives, and new and innovative approaches to adaptation. Our report also clarifies knowledge gaps and summarizes information on emerging issues.

Download the report in full or by chapter below. The digital interactive version of the report is available at

Explore case stories from the report through the Map of Adaptation Actions.

For media inquiries, please contact NRCan Media Relations.

View or download the full report in a new window (PDF, 29 MB)

View or download specific chapters and infographics

Lead Authors

Richard Boyd

Richard Boyd – Costs and Benefits of Climate Impacts and Adaptation

Richard is a Senior Fellow - Resilient Communities at All One Sky Foundation, a not-for-profit charitable organization that assists communities at the nexus of energy and climate change. An environmental economist, his research interests include climate change risk assessment and economic decision-making methodologies, and he has authored several resource guides on these topics. Over the last 20 years, he has led numerous assessments of the socioeconomic impacts of climate change on water resources and quality, human health, energy systems and the built environment, as well as the costs and benefits of adaptation actions to inform decision-making at all levels of government, both within Canada and internationally.

Craig Brown

Craig Brown – Cities and Towns

Craig holds a PhD in Environmental Applied Science and Management from Ryerson University and works as an interdisciplinary researcher, consultant, and educator in the areas of urban sustainability and climate resilience. He has supported and managed projects at various scales relating to building and urban design, energy efficiency, climate resilience, flood risk management, green infrastructure, and monitoring and evaluation frameworks.

Ashlee  Cunsolo

Ashlee Cunsolo – Rural and Remote (co-lead)

Ashlee Cunsolo, PhD, is the Director of the Labrador Institute of Memorial University, and a passionate researcher, environmental advocate, and community-engaged social science and health researcher working at the intersection of place, culture, health, and environment. For over a decade, she has been working with Indigenous communities and leaders across Canada on a variety of community-led and community-identified research initiatives, including climate change impacts on physical and mental health, cultural reclamation and intergenerational knowledge sharing within a changing environment, and environmental grief and mourning. In particular, her work in partnership with Inuit in Nunatsiavut on climate change and mental health have become seminal studies globally, and her praxiological contributions on ecological grief and mourning have been widely recognized. She is also a contributing author to the IPCC AR6 North America Chapter and the Health Canada Climate Change and Health Assessment Report.

Jimena Eyzaguirre

Jimena Eyzaguirre – International Dimensions

Jimena is the international team director and business lead for climate change adaptation at ESSA Technologies Ltd. She has 15 years of experience in policy-relevant research and analysis. Her work since 2006 focuses on equipping individuals and organizations to understand and incorporate the implications of climate-related risks and vulnerabilities into plans and decisions that affect environmental and social outcomes. She has a breadth of Canadian and international experience in adaptation and climate resilience, including in program design, policy analysis, vulnerability assessment, knowledge synthesis and monitoring and evaluation. Jimena is vice president of the Canada-Mathare Education Trust, a Canadian charity dedicated to advancing education in Kenya.

Paul Kovacs

Paul Kovacs – Climate Disclosure, Litigation and Finance

Paul is the founder and Executive Director of the Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction (ICLR) at Western University, an independent, not-for-profit centre for multi-disciplinary disaster prevention research and communications. His research interest is insurance and adaptation to climate extremes. This includes action to build communities resilient to damage from urban flooding, tornadoes, catastrophic earthquakes and interface wildfire. Since 1996, Paul has been a volunteer with the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the international body for assessing the science related to climate change.

Don Lemmen

Don Lemmen – Sector Impacts and Adaptation Perspectives

Don obtained his PhD from the University of Alberta in 1988, studying past environmental change in the Canadian High Arctic. As the past research manager in the Climate Change Impacts and Adaptation Division of Natural Resources Canada, he led development of three Canadian national assessment reports of climate change impacts and adaptation, while contributing to other national, regional and global assessments. Internationally, he has been involved in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) process since 2003, including four years as co-chair of the UNFCCC Adaptation Committee. In 2019 he received an honourary Doctor of Environmental Studies from University of Waterloo for his career contributions to climate change adaptation. 

Michelle Molnar

Michelle Molnar – Ecosystem Services

Michelle works at the David Suzuki Foundation as an Environmental Economist and Policy Analyst, where she focuses on the conservation of natural capital using various tools of ecological economics, policy analysis, and public outreach. She teaches Introduction to Ecological Economics at the British Columbia Institute of Technology through the Sustainable Business Leadership Program and sits on the board of the Canadian Society for Ecological Economics. Michelle has an M.A. in Public Policy from Simon Fraser University and in Philosophy from the University of Western Ontario.

Kelly Vodden

Kelly Vodden – Rural and Remote (co-lead)

Kelly is Associate Professor and Associate Vice-President of Research and Graduate Studies at Grenfell Campus, Memorial University. She has been engaged in community and regional development research, policy and practice in Canadian rural communities for more than twenty-five years, including projects related to climate change impacts and adaptation in rural regions in British Columbia, Ontario, Saskatchewan, Newfoundland and Labrador (NL) and internationally. Kelly led a multi-year project to investigate and develop tools to assess climate change vulnerability and adaptation options in NL for the federal-provincial Atlantic Canada Adaptation Solutions Association, leading the development of climate change assessment reports for six communities and of a workbook for communities. She has also led several multi-year research projects with colleagues across the country on topics ranging from regional development to the sustainability of rural drinking water systems and community impacts of an increasingly mobile workforce. Kelly has presented and published widely on her work.


Al Pietroniro – Water Resources

Al is Professor and Chair in Sustainable Water Resources in a Changing Climate at the Schulich School of Engineering at the University of Calgary. He was formerly the Director of Environment Canada Water and Climate Services based at the National Hydrology Research Centre in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. He is Adjunct Professor in the Centre for Hydrology, University of Saskatchewan; Adjunct Professor in the Department of Civil Engineering, University of Waterloo and Associate Faculty, Department of Environmental Biology, University of Guelph. He graduated with distinction from the Agricultural Engineering Program at McGill University. He received Department Scholarships from the Department of Civil Engineering, University of Waterloo and holds a Citation of Excellence, Department of Environment. Al is Canadian Delegate to the WMO Commission on Hydrology; President of the International Association of Hydrological Sciences – Commission of Remote Sensing and a registered professional engineer in the Province of Saskatchewan.

Fiona Warren

Fiona Warren – Introduction

Fiona is the Assessment Manager with the Climate Change Impacts and Adaptation Division at Natural Resources Canada. She leads Canada in a Changing Climate, the national knowledge assessment, and the development and editing of the National Issues and Regional Perspectives reports. Fiona has extensive experience working on science assessments as a science editor, lead author and project coordinator (2004, 2008 and 2016). She also led the development of the 2014 assessment entitled Canada in a Changing Climate: Sector Perspectives on Impacts and Adaptation. She was a contributing author of the North America chapter in the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and has been an expert reviewer of several reports and papers on climate change issues. She holds a Master of Science in Geography from McMaster University and a Bachelor of Science (with honours) in Environmental Science from Queen’s University.

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