© Jukka Jantunen / Shutterstock Collared Pika

CLIMATE CHANGE

The climate crisis is wreaking havoc across the globe, putting the future of the planet as we know it at risk.

The Global Climate Crisis

Climate change is accelerating sea-ice loss and worsening wildfires, floods, drought, avalanches, heatwaves and sea-level rise. It’s decreasing the flow of rivers, eliminating streams altogether and increasing ocean acidification, which threatens marine life. Climate change is also contributing to a dramatic loss of natural habitats, which is being felt by wildlife and people in Canada and around the world.

Meet Our Experts

    Photo-of-Simon-Mitchell-WWF

    Simon J. Mitchell

    Vice President, Resilient Habitats

    Simon J. Mitchell

    Vice President, Resilient Habitats

    Simon leads WWF-Canada’s Resilient Habitats team, which works from coast to coast to coast protect landscapes, habitats and species.  A key function of Simons work is to identify strategies and actions across terrestrial and marine environments that improve the healthy and resilience of nature and people.

    Photo-of-Andrew-Dumbrille-WWF

    Andrew Dumbrille

    Lead Specialist, Marine Shipping and Conservation

    Andrew Dumbrille

    Lead Specialist, Marine Shipping and Conservation

    Through research, advocacy, and engagement with Indigenous communities and international forums like the Arctic Council and the International Maritime Organization, Andrew works on reducing the impact of shipping on the marine environment. Andrew attended Trent Univeristy and focused on culture, english and Indigenous studies.

    Photo-of-Jessica-Currie-WWF

    Jessica Currie

    Specialist, Science, Research & Innovation

    Jessica Currie

    Specialist, Science, Research & Innovation

    Jessica supports WWF-Canada’s Science, Research and Innovation team through research, management of big data, and both qualitative and quantitative analyses, providing an evidence base for WWF-Canada’s conservation work. Noteworthy analyses include the Living Planet Report for Canada and the Wildlife Protection Assessment. Jessica holds a Master’s of Science in Environmental Sustainability.

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© BMJ / Shutterstock ice melting

Rising Global Temperatures

Since the industrial revolution, human activities have caused average global temperatures to rise by almost 1°C. Levels of carbon dioxide and other heat-trapping greenhouse gases in the atmosphere are higher than they have been at any point in human existence — and they’re still increasing.

Scientists warn that exceeding an average global warming of 1.5°C will significantly accelerate changes that are already underway, leading to ecosystem disruption and, in some cases, destruction. The magnitude of these changes will negatively impact nature and people — and unless stronger climate actions are taken, our planet will continue tracking towards 3°C levels.

Climate Change Effects

© Shutterstock Atlantic Walrus

Wildlife

Climate change is already having an impact on wildlife. The warming planet is altering ecosystems and affecting where species live, how they interact and when biological events occur. Even the most subtle changes to habitat can result in wildlife struggling to find food and places to live, leading to increasing numbers of species in severe decline.

© DCBPresents / Shutterstock free flowing river

Freshwater

Climate change is altering weather and water patterns in Canada and around the world, causing shortages and droughts in some areas and floods in others, which impact wildlife and the viability of freshwater ecosystems.

© Yingna Cai / Shutterstock sea shore

Oceans

People and wildlife depend on the health of our oceans as a natural resource. Oceans have absorbed a great deal of the carbon released since industrial times. This results in warmer and more acidic oceans. The changes have disrupted marine food chains, commercial fisheries and ocean habitats such as coral reefs and eelgrass beds.

© Paul Nicklen / National Geographic Stock

Arctic

The Canadian Arctic is warming three times as fast as the rest of the Earth, affecting weather around the globe and threatening the foundation of Arctic ecosystems. If current trends continue, Arctic summer sea ice is expected to disappear before the mid-century, which will have cascading consequences worldwide. We can help conserve this region by protecting the Arctic from offshore development, reducing pollution and accidents and enhancing ecosystem resilience to climate change.

What is WWF-Canada doing

WWF-Canada is working on nature-based climate solutions to reduce the release of greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere and increase our adaptation and resilience to the changes that have already begun.

WWF-Canada is committed to working with First Nations, Métis and local communities where our support is welcome, along with governments, businesses and others to:

  • Understand the specific threats that the climate breakdown poses to wildlife and what is required to restore habitat and increase resilience.
  • Map locations for habitat-friendly renewable energy to ensure that the transition to 100 per cent renewable energy by 2050 takes the well-being of wildlife, nature and communities into account.
  • Develop and implement nature-based climate solutions on land and seascapes.
  • Restore land-based habitat such as forests and groundcover in built-up areas as well as marine coastal ecosystems to naturally increase carbon capture and storage.
  • Restrict the release of carbon to the atmosphere by protecting Canada’s carbon stores.
© Peter Ewins / WWF-Canada ocean landscape

Nature-Based Climate Solutions

Nature is considered one of the most powerful tools in the fight against climate change — and yet it has been largely overlooked.

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© Patricia Buckley / WWF-Canada wind turbines

Habitat-Friendly Renewable Energy

WWF-Canada supports the transition to habitat-friendly renewable energy. These projects must take into consideration the needs of both wildlife and communities.

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How You Can Help Fight the Climate Crisis

To address the climate crisis, we must act quickly to reduce carbon emissions, switch to habitat-friendly renewable energy and make nature and communities more resilient.

You can help fight the climate crisis by:

  • Choosing renewable energy sources for all your energy needs (heating and cooling in homes, workplaces and personal transportation).
  • Purchasing food and manufactured products that use the least fossil fuel energy to produce. Shop for local products whenever possible to cut down on energy use for shipping and storage.
  • Supporting local biodiversity in towns, cities, and other built-up areas and along coastlines to improve wildlife habitat and carbon capture through enhanced vegetation. Check out In The Zone and Biopolis for inspiration on how you can create your own nature-based climate solutions.
  • Supporting stewardship of wildlife and habitat by First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities wherever possible.

What You Can Do

hands planting

In The Zone

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gardeners

Living Planet at Campus

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employees with panda

Living Planet at Work

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