Leveraging the Ecosystem Serviced Approach in Climate Change Policy and Planning

When and Where

Wednesday, April 05, 2023 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm
Sidney Smith Hall
100 St George St, Toronto, ON M5S 3G3


Natasha Tang Kai (University of Waterloo)


"The climate threat is real but so are the possibilities to find new and creative approaches that are equitable, profitable, and within the limits of the natural world. Meaningful actions begin by understanding climate science, applying systems-thinking and interdisciplinary approaches.Portrait photograph of Natasha Tang Kai. In this talk, I explore climate action in the context of sustainability planning with more focused discussion on the Ecosystem Services Approach (ESA). The ESA is a policy and planning strategy for building urban climate resilience to deliver services such as natural floor protection, carbon storage, and temperature control. I present survey findings from a Canada-wide city study on their readiness for climate action using the ESA. The survey found that climate change planning is driving adaption responses and disaster risk reduction in Canadian cities, however, the governance of Ecosystem Services (ES) is not clearly or consistently defined. Canadian cities recognize the importance of natural assets, but lack robust ES frameworks, biophysical and monetary valuation approaches. Science-policy gaps exist. In this talk, I propose strategies for policy and planning, to build more climate resilient and sustainable cities for future generations."

This event is hosted by the Department of Human Geography, part of the University of Toronto Scarborough. 


Department of Human Geography (UTSC)


100 St George St, Toronto, ON M5S 3G3