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Umbrella Stormwater Bulletin | 1 October : 10

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The insurance industry has a role in climate adaptation, flood reduction

 
Cities should protect and enhance "natural infrastructure" to reduce flooding. The insurance industry should pay for an education and outreach campaign promoting flood protection for homeowners and the real estate sector.

These were some key recommendations in a report released this month by Partners for Action, an initiative funded by the Cooperators and carried out by researchers at the University of Waterloo. This past June, representatives from major insurance companies and other stakeholders gathered to address extreme weather. Together, stakeholders identified “winning conditions that must be established within Canada to help de-risk flood potential”.

In 2013, the Canadian insurance industry paid out $3.2 billion dollars in claims related to severe weather – the Alberta floods alone cost the industry $1.72 billion dollars. Flooding has overtaken fire as the highest cost to insurers in claims, and Aviva reported that the value of an average claim from water damage had increased 160% between 2000 and 2010. This is in spite of the fact that Canadian insurers (uniquely among G8 nations) do not offer residential coverage for overland flooding.

(Click here to read more about how the insurance industry can work with homeowners...)

POLL: Have you ever made an insurance claim due to flooding in your home?

Contribute to the bulletin!

Let us know if you have a green infrastructure project or story that should be featured in the blog, a news item you'd like to share, or an event that Umbrella subscribers would be interested in. Email us or contribute to the thread in The Umbrella.

Latest news

Climate denial costs the U.S. billions. A report from the President's Council of Economic Advisers shows that lack of action on climate change goals could cost the country billions of dollars annually. White House Office of Management and Budget is committed to accurately weighing the benefits of acting on climate change.

Nova Scotia residents fuming after repeated flood damage. Residents of Lower Sackville, Nova Scotia are frustrated after a series of floods have left their basements damaged. City council hopes to approve a $259,000 plan to improve stormwater piping, though this could potentially cause other issues as rainwater volumes increase.

Urban flooding bill introduced in Congress. US Representatives Mike Quigley (D-IL) and Peter King (R-NY) introduced the bipartisan Urban Flooding Awareness Act. The Act will help American communities identify innovative solutions that can protect their investments and environment. Read the act here.

DDOE approves first stormwater retention credit trade. The District Department of the Environment (DDOE) has approved a trade of 11,013 Stormwater Retention Credits (SRCs) worth $25,000. SRC trading can increase the total volume of stormwater runoff being kept out of District waterbodies and provide other sustainability benefits, such as reducing the urban heat island effect and providing green jobs. For more information, visit ddoe.dc.gov/src.

Filters for stormdrains. A town in Massachusetts is installing filters on 52 storm drains to capture suspended solids, oils, hydrocarbons and phosphorus. The filters need to be replaced every 3-5 years and regularly cleaned. Do you have experience with filters for storm drains and their effectiveness for removing pollution? Discuss this on The Umbrella.

Events

Living Waters Rally. 3-6 October, 2014. Freshwater lovers, advocates and colleagues gather for four days of education, celebration and inspiration in Ottawa-Gatineau.

60 Years: Connecting our Past, Shaping our Future. 4 October, 2014. Credit Valley Conservation Authority. Includes talks on the history of stormwater management and Depave Paradise.

Moving Climate Change Adaptation Forward: Key Themes from the Great Lakes Adaptation Assessment for Cities. 7 October, 2014. To attend this webinar, email Annette Morand at amorand@mirarco.org.

Long-Term Performance and Life-Cycle Costs of Stormwater Best Management Practices 9 October, 2014. Presenters Scott Taylor of RFB consulting and Nick Tiedeken of the Minnesota Department of Transportation. Webinar.

Living with Water by Design. 22 October, 2014.Webinar. Henk Ovink describes New York City and region’s response to Hurricane Sandy and NYC's future as a resilient city. Webinar.

Resilient Rainwater Management: Across Canada Workshop Series on Stormwater Management and Adapting to a Changing Climate. 30 October, 2014. Rideau Valley Conservation Authority. Workshop. Ottawa. Click link for more dates.

The Umbrella is an online community designed for knowledge-sharing about green stormwater infrastructure. Its members are municipal stormwater professionals, policymakers, academics, engineers, conservation authorities, nonprofits, and interested community members. The Umbrella is managed by Green Communities Canada. Submit an item for an upcoming issue or provide feedback on the bulletin.

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