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Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2015 Jan 12;12(1):623-51. doi: 10.3390/ijerph120100623.

Public health adaptation to climate change in Canadian jurisdictions.

Author information

1
Department of Geography, McGill University, Burnside Hall Building Room 705, 805 Sherbrooke Street West, Montreal, QC H3A 0B9, Canada. stephanie.austin@mail.mcgill.ca.
2
Department of Geography, McGill University, Burnside Hall Building Room 705, 805 Sherbrooke Street West, Montreal, QC H3A 0B9, Canada. james.ford@mcgill.ca.
3
Department of Geography, McGill University, Burnside Hall Building Room 705, 805 Sherbrooke Street West, Montreal, QC H3A 0B9, Canada. lea.berrangford@mcgill.ca.
4
Department of Geography, McGill University, Burnside Hall Building Room 705, 805 Sherbrooke Street West, Montreal, QC H3A 0B9, Canada. malcolm.araosegan@mail.mcgill.ca.
5
Enteric Surveillance and Population Studies Division, Centre for Food-borne, Environmental and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases, Public Health Agency of Canada, 255 Woodlawn Road West, Unit 120, Guelph, ON N1H 8J1, Canada. stephen.parker@phac-aspc.gc.ca.
6
Environmental Issues Division, Public Health Agency of Canada, 255 Woodlawn Road West, Unit 120, Guelph, ON N1H 8J1, Canada. Manon.D.Fleury@phac-aspc.gc.ca.

Abstract

Climate change poses numerous risks to the health of Canadians. Extreme weather events, poor air quality, and food insecurity in northern regions are likely to increase along with the increasing incidence and range of infectious diseases. In this study we identify and characterize Canadian federal, provincial, territorial and municipal adaptation to these health risks based on publically available information. Federal health adaptation initiatives emphasize capacity building and gathering information to address general health, infectious disease and heat-related risks. Provincial and territorial adaptation is varied. Quebec is a leader in climate change adaptation, having a notably higher number of adaptation initiatives reported, addressing almost all risks posed by climate change in the province, and having implemented various adaptation types. Meanwhile, all other Canadian provinces and territories are in the early stages of health adaptation. Based on publically available information, reported adaptation also varies greatly by municipality. The six sampled Canadian regional health authorities (or equivalent) are not reporting any adaptation initiatives. We also find little relationship between the number of initiatives reported in the six sampled municipalities and their provinces, suggesting that municipalities are adapting (or not adapting) autonomously.

PMID:
25588156
PMCID:
PMC4306883
DOI:
10.3390/ijerph120100623
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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