Adaptation Futures 2023

October 4, 2023  |  8:30 am to 10:00 am (EDT)

Julier pass road in switzerland in autumn

Making nature count for adaptation: Global, national and local action to value services provided by nature


It is widely recognized that nature-based solutions have a key role to play in climate adaptation. Historically, climate adaptation approaches have heavily relied on “grey” infrastructure solutions to either control natural processes, or to harden development, to reduce risk of damage and danger to public safety. In some cases, these techniques have resulted in negative impacts on the function of ecosystems.

In contrast, nature-based solutions can help manage climate risks in a way that provides benefits for both people and nature. Examples include protecting and restoring wetlands to manage downstream flooding or increasing urban forest cover to reduce extreme heat in cities. The role of nature in climate adaptation is underscored by Target 11 of the recently adopted Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework, which calls for Parties to use nature-based solutions to restore, maintain and enhance nature’s contributions to people, including protection from natural hazards.

As parties work to implement the Global Biodiversity Framework, there is significant opportunity to accelerate the use of nature-based solutions to reduce the impact of climate change on people, while achieving multiple benefits. Identifying and valuing these multiple benefits will be important to support decision-making to make this opportunity a reality, at global, national and local scales.

A key challenge is that, while nature is considered by many to be priceless, nature’s contributions to people are largely absent from the financial balance sheet of a world driven by produced capital and GDP. This panel session brings together leaders working at global, national and local scales to highlight initiatives and tools that are already been applied to make the value of nature for climate adaptation (and other services) transparent. Specific consideration will be given to how Indigenous ways of knowing and values can be used to accelerate this process. Canada will also be used as a case study to discussed the inter-relationship between organization and ecosystem scales.


Joanna Eyquem – Managing Director, Climate Resilient Infrastructure, Intact Centre on Climate Adaptation, University of Waterloo

Dr. Ursule Boyer-Villemaire – Team Leader, Socioeconomic Analysis for Adaptation, Ouranos and Associate Professor in Disaster Risk and Resilience, Universite du Québec a Montreal

Shawn Blankinship – First Nations Financial Management Board

Bailey Church – Lead, National Public Sector Accounting Advisory, KPMG Canada

Liesbeth Casier – Lead, NBI Global Resource Centre, International Institute for
Sustainable Development (IISD)

This event will be in-person only.


About Adaptation Futures:

The Adaptation Futures Conference series is the premier international conference devoted entirely to climate change adaptation, bringing together researchers, policymakers, practitioners, industry representatives and communicators to present their work in adaptation, learn what others are doing, and build networks. The Conference provides a unique chance to share expertise, skills and backgrounds and exchange experiences with an active adaptation network. This conference is the flagship event of the World Adaptation Science Programme (WASP), one of the four components of the World Climate Programme.

In October 2023, Ouranos, the Government of Canada and the WASP will host the 7th edition of Adaptation Futures (AF2023). While the main hub of the conference will be located at the Palais des congrès de Montréal, Québec, Canada, an innovative format will facilitate the participation of a wide range of stakeholders around the world.