Canada: Environment committee hears about Prince Edward Island government's response to coastal erosion
CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. — Vanishing coastlines. Damaged lighthouses. Unexpected storm surges. Washed-out roads.
These events may increasingly be in P.E.I.’s present and future, say the two top civil servants responsible for climate mitigation efforts.
Todd Dupuis, executive director of climate change and environment, and Brad Colwill, deputy minister of Environment, Water and Climate Change, told legislators on Thursday that P.E.I. faces increasing challenges due to the present climate crisis.
The two, along with Climate Change Minister Brad Trivers, spoke to the standing committee on natural resources and environmental sustainability about climate adaptation efforts on P.E.I.
Unlike mitigation efforts, which focus on reducing carbon emissions, adaptation efforts focus on tackling the impacts of climate change that are already occurring. The most obvious impacts, Dupuis told the committee, are affecting buildings and roads near coastal areas.
"We are perhaps one of the more vulnerable regions, jurisdictions in the country," Dupuis told the committee.
"(Baring) our friends and neighbours in the north, we're probably one of the highest impacted jurisdictions in the country when it comes to climate change."
Dupuis said he expected a sea level rise of at least three feet in P.E.I. by 2100.
P.E.I. loses, on average, 25 to 30 cm of coastline per year.