New Applied Research Network to Advance Flood Resiliency in Canada

Taking the initiative in creating a more climate-resilient Canada, The Co-operators, a Canadian-owned, multi-line insurance company, and Canadian re-insuance company Farm Mutual Reinsurance Plan (FMRP), have announced the creation of a new applied research network to advance flood resiliency in Canada.

The network, called the Partners for Action (P4A) Network, is to be based at the University of Waterloo’s Faculty of Environment.

“The Faculty of Environment at Waterloo is leading the country in climate adaptation research at a point in time when it is needed most,” said Jean Andrey, Dean of the Faculty of Environment at the University of Waterloo. “We are eager and excited to offer this expertise to Partners for Action, as they take the initiative in creating a more climate-resilient Canada.”

$1.1 Million Investment

The two founding partners have committed $1.1 million to the new applied research network, which will work to advance flood resiliency in Canada in the face of a changing climate.

P4A will use a collaborative approach that brings together a diverse set of stakeholders from business, government and non-governmental organizations to create and share knowledge, address information needs and drive action to better manage the risk posed by flooding. Its work will include monetizing the economic costs and benefits of adaptation, as well as the social and environmental co-benefits, and promoting the need for improved flood mapping across the country.

“This partnership is an example of co-operative and mutual insurance companies working together to address an important unmet need in our communities – that is, our lack of resiliency when it comes to flooding,” said Kathy Bardswick, president and CEO of The Co-operators. “A challenge of this magnitude and complexity requires a collaborative undertaking involving a wide variety of stakeholders. That’s the concept behind P4A.”

“Together with the 54 mutual insurance companies comprising our voting members, we welcome this opportunity to support P4A,” said Steve Smith, president and CEO of Farm Mutual Reinsurance Plan Inc.

“Flooding affects more people globally than any other type of natural disaster and causes the largest economic, social and humanitarian losses. Advancing flood resiliency through research will help the insurance industry protect Canadians from financial loss caused by flooding.”

car during a flood
Car during a flood in Calgary, Canada, 2006. Photo: Journ @ Flickr