Partners for Action has received $600,000 from The Co-operators to inform Canadians about the changing nature of flood risk and equip them with the tools and knowledge needed to prepare, adapt, and build their personal and community flood resilience.
This announcement comes at a time when the increasing frequency and severity of extreme weather continues to capture global attention, and with environmental risk accounting for three of the top five risks of the World Economic Forum’s Global Risks Report 2019.
In Canada, impacts of extreme weather like flooding continue to bring significant financial, emotional, and social costs to communities. Flooding, for example, has surpassed fire as the costliest cause of damage to Canadian homes according to the Insurance Bureau of Canada, without accounting for uninsured losses or immeasurable damages to mental health or emotional well-being.
A significant awareness gap remains despite a growing urgency for Canadian communities to adapt to, prepare for, and mitigate flood risk. A 2017 report by Partners for Action found that 94 per cent of Canadians living in flood risk zones did not know they were at risk.
“Flooding is a serious risk for Canadians,” said Jean Andrey, dean of the faculty of environment at the University of Waterloo. “We need strong partnerships across sectors to enable individuals and communities to build resilience to flood impacts. Through our applied research and collaboration with a wide range of organizations, we are working to understand the needs of Canadian communities, with the goal of overcoming barriers to flood resilience.”
The renewed funding from The Co-operators will enable Partners for Action to facilitate increased risk awareness and improved decision-making to help Canadian communities become more resilient to flooding.
A critical component of Partners for Action’s efforts is its emphasis on cross-sector engagement of researchers, all levels of government, businesses and NGOs. By sharing best practices, challenges and insights across diverse stakeholders, Partners for Action is committed to facilitating the development of collaborative solutions.