Quebec Regional Adaptation Collaborative
The Quebec Regional Adaptation Collaborative (RAC) has focused its climate change adaptation efforts on three themes: built environment, water management, and socio-economic activities, including forestry, agriculture, and tourism and recreation.
The RAC Climate Change Program’s goal is to promote climate change adaptation planning in Canadian communities; for more information, see the program case study, Canada’s Regional Adaptation Collaboratives. The Quebec RAC is focusing its efforts to improve the province’s resilience to climate change by concentrating on three themes – Built Environment, Water Management, and Socioeconomic Activities. The effort is being led by Ouranos Inc. and has over 20 partners in the federal, private, and non-governmental sectors.
The Quebec RAC has divided its focus on the Built Environment theme into two geographic regions – north and south. The northern group plans to produce a series of maps depicting permafrost characteristics to help inform future building site selections in Nunavik communities as the ground begins to warm. Trainings will be conducted to help community members effectively manage existing infrastructure located on warming permafrost. Finally, village expansion plans and adaptation strategies related to coastal impacts will be developed to help increase the resilience of communities in Nunavik. The southern group plans to focus on issues such as stormwater management, municipal infrastructure vulnerabilities, flooding, and urban heat islands.
The Water Management theme will consider the potential impacts climate change may pose to water resources, infrastructure, and management. In particular, scenarios will be developed to help determine the possible maximum flood loads to evaluate existing dam safety. Conversely, low-flow scenarios will be used to help develop water conservation policies and an early warning, low-flow, and excessive-water-withdrawal warning system for the Yamaska River in southern Quebec. Finally, the Quebec RAC will analyze potential changes to the Ottawa River watershed hydrologic system.
The Socioeconomic Activities theme will analyze the impacts climate change may pose to forestry, agriculture, and tourism and recreational activities to help create tools that will proactively manage sectors to combat the effects of climate change. The forestry group will conduct three pilot projects using ecosystem-based management to assess vulnerabilities to climate change, develop a seed transfer model for the black spruce, jack pine, and white spruce, and develop and improve water scenarios within Quebec’s forests. The agriculture group will analyze case studies to help control agricultural pests in the future, develop an agroclimatic atlas, and update standards for water distribution to agriculture. The tourism group will analyze the impacts climate change may present to the tourism and recreational sectors in Quebec.
Outcomes and Conclusions
Many of these projects should be completed by the end of 2012. More information on funded projects may be found in Ouranos fact sheets; some examples include:
- Producing Predictive Maps of Permafrost Characteristics to Guide the Development of the Built Environment in Nunavik Communities
- Stormwater Management and Climate Change
- Adaptation of Dam Safety to Climate Change Impacts by Using Low Recurrence-Interval Floods and by Informing Managers about the Uncertainties
- Analysis of Socioeconomic Impacts and Adaptation to Climate Change in Quebec’s Tourism Industry
Feifel, K. M. (2012). Quebec Regional Adaptation Collaborative [Case study on a project of Natural Resources Canada and Ouranos]. Product of EcoAdapt's State of Adaptation Program. Retrieved from CAKE: www.cakex.org/case-studies/quebec-regional-adaptation-collaborative (Last updated October 2012)