Listen to CBC’s ‘Canada in 2050 – Our Future in a Changing Climate’

Download an MP3 of the entire program (22MB).


In the coming decades, our country is going to be transformed by climate change. According to Don MacIver, Director of the Adaptation and Impacts Research Group at Environment Canada in Toronto, there will be no part of Canadian life that won’t be affected by climate change. In this program, we ask Canadian climate scientists to look ahead to 2050, to paint us a picture of what our country will look like as it’s being transformed. Our guests include:


Dr. Andrew Weaver, a climatologist in the Department of Earth and Ocean Sciences at the University of Victoria. Dr. Weaver discusses the changes in his home town, and how the climate models he works with predict our changing climate.


Dr. Barry Smit, Professor of Geography at the University of Guelph and Canada Research Chair in Global Environmental Change. Dr. Smit studies how we might adapt to a changing climate and looks ahead to how the landscape and life of people in British Columbia will be transformed.


Joan Klaassen, Meteorological Service of Canada, Environment Canada, Ontario Region. Joan Klaassen studies extreme weather, such as drought, ice storms and rainstorms, and looks at how a future with more of these events will affect central Canada.


Dr David Barber, Canada Research Chair in Arctic System Science at the University of Manitoba. Dr Barber has studied Arctic sea ice for twenty-five years, and looks ahead to the future of the North, in which summers are entirely ice-free.


Dr Murray Humphries, Assistant Professor of Wildlife Biology, and NSERC Northern Research Chair at McGill University in Montreal. Dr Humphries discusses how terrestrial animals adapted to cold northern climates will be affected as their environment warms.


Dr Jeremy Kerr, Department of Biology, and Canadian Facility for Ecoinformatics Research, University of Ottawa. Dr. Kerr has been studying how ecosystems and biodiversity, particularly in Canada’s south, already stressed by human encroachment, will be further pressured by climate change.


Linda Mortsch, Senior Researcher with the Adaptation and Impacts Research Group, Environment Canada/University of Waterloo. Linda Mortsch has been studying water concerns in a warming climate, particularly in the Great Lakes.


Dr. Dave Sauchyn, Professor of Geography at the University of Regina, Research Coordinator for the Prairie Adaptation Research Collaborative. Dr Sauchyn has been studying water issues on the Prairies, which are already important and will become critical as warming aggravates water scarcity.


Dr. Allan Carroll, Research Scientist in Insect Ecology, Pacific Forestry Centre of the Canadian Forest Service in Victoria. Dr. Carroll has been studying the Mountain Pine Beetle outbreak in BC forests, and how a warming climate might make future outbreaks of pests and disease more common in Canada’s forests.


Dr. Mike Flannigan, Research Scientist in the Fire Research Group, Canadian Forest Service, Great Lakes Forestry Centre in Sault Ste. Marie. Fire, too, is expected to become more frequent in Canada’s future, and Dr. Flannigan in interested in how this might affect Canada’s huge Boreal forest.


Dr. Norm Catto, Department of Geography, Memorial University of Newfoundland. Dr. Catto has studied how climate change, including more variable weather, changes in ocean currents and sea level change will affect Atlantic Canada.