Canadian Institue Of Planners

Shaping our Communities
Sustaining Canada's Future.

Climate Change

The global climate is changing, leading to increased hazards, extreme weather conditions, and transformations to the physical environment in Canada and beyond. Preparing for the unavoidable impacts of climate change requires a drastic shift in the way we build our communities, and requires immediate and committed action at every level of government, society, and across all sectors.

Planners are in a unique position to bring together officials, citizens, and allied professions in an integrated and collaborative approach, and in a program of careful, equity-oriented planning.

Policy for Climate Change Planning

The Climate Change Policy defines the role that planning has in meeting the complex challenges of climate change, and calls planners to action to create communities that are resilient and contribute to climate stability.

The policy was led by the CIP Climate Change Committee and developed through a thoughful and extensive consultation with professional planners, climate change researchers, advocates, and other partner organizations using interviews, surveys, and focus groups.


Smart Energy Communities Benchmark 

The Smart Energy Communities Benchmark measures where a community stands relative to Canadian best practices on ten indicators that, taken together, constitute the core characteristics of a Smart Energy Community. For more information click here

Accounting for Natural Assets: A Low Carbon Resilience Approach

New report from ACT SFU accounting for Natural Assets report summarizes the findings of a study on the tangible value of natural assets, aiming to help local government decision-makers better understand how other communities are valuing natural assets. Read the full report here. provides high-resolution climate data to help urban planners, municipal officials and other decision makers build more resilient Canadian communities. This interactive portal allows users to explore, visualize and download past and future climate data, and provides access to a range of resources including customizable data analysis tools and sector modules with tailored data and case studies.

Low Carbon Resilience Case Studies

The SFU Adaptation to Climate Change team (ACT) has recently launched a new series of case studies focused on providing examples of LCR interventions that have been applied in Canadian and international communities at the building, neighbourhood and community levels. For more information click here.


CIP commits to carbon neutrality

Recognizing that climate change is the single largest threat to our world and the communities we live in, the Canadian Institute of Planners (CIP) reaffirms its commitment to continued action and advocacy, and promises to implement new measures to reduce its own carbon impact. To read the full statement click here.

CIP join Planners for Climate Action

CIP are pleased to be members of Planners for Climate Action, founded at the 23rd Conference of Parties (COP-23) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), in Bonn on 11 November 2017. The initiative, convened by UN-Habitat, is comprised of associations of planning practitioners and planning educators, collectively representing tens of thousands of planners worldwide, as well as other partners active in this area. For more information click here

2019 Benchmarking survey of Canadian professional planners 

In order to determine what the needs of planners are with respect to climate change, CIP undertook a survey of planners in partnership with Natural Resources Canada (NRCan), under the Building Regional Adaptation Capacity and Expertise (BRACE) program. To read the entire report, please click here.



Climate Atlas of Canada

Coinciding with CIP's launch of its policy on climate change, the Prairie Climate Centre has launched its Climate Atlas of Canada, a comprehensive  tool that provides valuable spatial data in a straightforward, easily accessible way - as it provides practioners with evidence to assess the causes and consequences of climate change.        


Climate Change Annotated Bibliography

CIP's Climate Change Committee (CCC) is proud to launch a series of annotated bibliographies. This initiative explores the dynamic and challenging issues that affect the ability of the planning profession to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions, while adapting to the impacts of climate change. The committee encourages all members to read and share the bibliographies. 

Annotated Bibligraphy Series-Executive summary of all issues

Issues 01 - The Super Wicked Problem of Climate Change
Issues 02 - Legislation in a Changing Climate
Issues 03 - Managing the Complexity of Climate Change through Planning
Issues 04 - Incremental Implementation Strategies for Taking Action on Climate Change
Issues 05 - Pathways to Action - Mitigation
Issues 06 - Pathways to Action - Adaptation

For further information about CIP's work on climate change, visit our Resource Library: