As the devastation caused by extreme weather events continues to unfold in Texas, we imagine what could happen in Manitoba and the Winnipeg Metropolitan Region if we should experience such mass power outages combined with freezing temperatures.
The impacts of a changing climate are being felt across Canada and the globe—and building our capacity (resilience) to manage the extremes has become top of mind for leaders, planners, engineers, scientists, and environmental groups alike. Building resiliency requires a collaborative approach and a team effort—something we know is not always easy but is critical if we are going to protect communities, ecosystems, and our economy from challenges once thought far on the horizon.
Understanding and addressing the shocks and stresses extreme weather can produce is a foundational focus as the leaders at the Winnipeg Metropolitan Region develop the first draft of Plan20-50: a long-term land use and servicing plan that calls for collaboration across municipal boundaries.
Establishing climate change resiliency is essential to the region’s sustainable development. Through collaboration, innovation, and best practice, the first draft of Plan20-50 looks to facilitate economic competitiveness and growth while protecting land and water. This creates a high quality of life for residents in a way that supports a growing economy and cultivates sustainability.
Flood and drought resilience; climate change adaptation; and long-term protection of water, air, and soil are tasks require a collaborative approach. Wise environmental stewardship supports healthy ecosystems, biodiversity and watersheds, and ensures optimal water quality and quantity—balancing the needs of the natural environment, the needs of the communities, and the needs of a growing economy.
Our water is one of our greatest economic and environmental opportunities. To effectively plan our future and build our competitiveness, we must understand our strengths and our weaknesses and plan for a future that may throw us a few curve balls.
That’s what Plan20-50 intends to do.