Canada

Climate change will cost Ontario’s transportation infrastructure billions by 2030, watchdog says

Making Ontario’s public transportation infrastructure resilient to a changing climate is a matter of short-term pain for long-term gain, or at least pain relief, according to the state’s finances. The watchdog says in a new report.

The Ontario Financial Accountability Office (FAO) estimates that climate change will increase the cost of maintaining the province’s public transportation infrastructure by an average of $1.5 billion annually over the next nine years.

This will require an additional $13 billion by 2030 to keep Ontario’s roads, railroads, bridges and other transportation infrastructure functioning in changing cycles of extreme heat, rainfall and freeze-thaw. means to be

In the long run, costs depend on the extent of climate change, but it is cheaper to adapt infrastructure aggressively than to wait for a response in both medium and high emissions scenarios. the book points out.

It is estimated that “adapting public transport will increase infrastructure costs by $110 billion to $229 billion compared to a stable climate scenario by 2100.” “Those additional climate-related costs are significant, but they are less expensive for states and local governments than not adapting in the long term.”

Of Ontario’s $330 billion worth of public transportation infrastructure, 82% is owned by local governments and the remaining 18% is owned by the province.

“Given the long service life of public transport infrastructure, climatic conditions in the second half of the century are relevant to adaptation decisions that are being made now,” the report notes. “These decisions will impact public infrastructure costs now and throughout the century.”

The extent to which states will need to adapt to climate change is substantial, according to the report. For example, in Ontario, between 1976 and 2005, there were an average of four days per year when mercury was above 30 degrees Celsius. This is projected to reach 34 days per year from 2071 to 2100.

Peter Tabuns, interim leader of the official opposition NDP, said in a statement that Ontario is paying the price for the climate crisis through the floods, tornadoes and damaged property cleanup bill, and that the state invests in adaptation. Without it, the cost would be higher, he said. infrastructure.

“[Premier] Doug Ford’s anti-environment movement is deepening the climate crisis, and it will do us a disservice,” Tubbs said.

Making Ontario’s public transportation infrastructure resilient to a changing climate is a matter of short-term pain for long-term gain, or at least pain relief, according to the state’s finances. The watchdog says in a new report.

“We cannot continue to waste time on meaningful climate action. The longer Ontario takes to tackle the climate crisis, the more it will pay for the results. ‘he added, calling on the government to work on infrastructure adaptation.

Ontario’s Green Party leader, Mike Schreiner, said the request prompted the FAO report and in a statement called on the government to act, even if it wasn’t “doing the right thing.” He said he hoped he would need the money to make it happen.

“It is morally and financially irresponsible for the Ford administration to refuse to address and adapt to climate change in any meaningful way,” Shriner said. “It hurts our wallets and our children’s futures.”

Philip Robinson, spokesperson for Environment Minister David Piccini, said Ontario is investing in clean steel, public transportation and electric vehicles. The state also introduced “targeted, country-leading measures” such as increasing the renewable content of gasoline, and opening more highways to reduce idle cars getting stuck in traffic. It is under construction, he said in an email.

A study conducted by the former Liberal government suggested that two of the Ford administration’s pillar highway projects, State Highway 413 and the Bradford Bypass, would cut commutes by just minutes. Other studies argue that building more and bigger highways won’t solve traffic congestion, but rather will only attract more vehicles.

“Our government will continue to fight climate change with new initiatives that are flexible and adaptable to the opportunities, needs and circumstances of Ontario’s people,” Robinson said.

This report is one of FAO’s ongoing Costing of Climate Change Impacts on Public Infrastructure projects.

Climate change will cost Ontario’s transportation infrastructure billions by 2030, watchdog says

Source link Climate change will cost Ontario’s transportation infrastructure billions by 2030, watchdog says

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