Climate Change – Adaptation & Mitigation
Climate change is more than a warming trend. A changing climate will lead to changes in many aspects of weather, such as wind patterns, the amount and type of precipitation, and the types and frequency of severe weather events that may be expected to occur. Such change could have far-reaching and unpredictable environmental, social and economic consequences.
A historical climate analysis and future climate projections were prepared by the Pacific Climate Impacts Consortium (PCIC) to inform local understanding of how Kimberley’s climate has been changing and how it may continue to change in the future. In short, temperatures in this area have warmed about 1 degree Celsius over the last century, and are forecast by PCIC to warm by an additional 2 to 3 degrees by the 2050s.
Overall precipitation in the area has seen a slight increase over the last hundred years, with a clear trend to less precipitation in the form of snow. In the future, precipitation is expected to see a slight increase in winter and slight decrease in summer. Stream flows have also been changing, with peak spring flows shifting into April/May from May/June since the 1950s. Future projections for stream flows predict earlier spring freshets with lower peak volumes and a more sustained duration, and lower stream flows in late summer and early fall.
As a participant in the Columbia Basin Trust’s (CBT) Communities Adapting to Climate Change Initiative, Kimberley is committed to increasing our community’s resiliency to climate change impacts at the local level. An assessment of local vulnerabilities to climate impacts and recommendations for adaptation are outlined in the Kimberley’s Adapting to Climate Change report.
Kimberley is committed to reducing local contributions to global climate change. The City has established reduction targets for both community emissions (e.g. from private vehicle use and building heating systems) and corporate emissions - created directly by the City’s delivery of traditional municipal services.
Our Community Energy and Emissions Plan sets a greenhouse gas emissions reduction target of 6% by 2020 from the 2007 baseline and identifies strategies to support residents, businesses and property owners in reducing their energy use. Community Energy and Emissions Inventories are provided to local governments by the Province.
The City of Kimberley is working to reduce energy use in our municipal operations, which helps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and also helps to improve our financial bottom line. In 2013 Kimberley reduced emissions from municipal operations by 23% from 2012 levels and over 18% from the 2007 baseline. This represents significant progress towards our goal of achieving a 33% reduction in corporate emissions by 2020 from the 2007 baseline.
As a signatory to the BC Climate Action Charter, the City reports annually on our efforts to reduce energy use and emissions from municipal buildings and fleet vehicles and on our efforts to support reductions in community-wide energy use and emissions.