Just three days before Fiona devastated PEI, the Federation of PEI Municipalities hosted a Municipal Climate Action Workshop that underlined how municipal planning can make communities more resilient to climate change.
Presenter Hope Parnham, Senior Adaptation Policy Advisor with the Province, noted Fiona was being described as “a once-in-a-lifetime” storm — the same description applied to Dorian just three years previous. As she said, it’s not the storms — but their increased frequency and intensity – that demonstrate climate change.
Fiona tumbled and snapped trees, sheared away dunes, damaged and tossed buildings, flooded coastlines and streets, created widespread power outages, cut off communications, and further complicated the supply of products and services — fuel being an obvious example. Landscapes and livelihoods have been devastated.
Amidst the destruction, Islanders pulled together to prepare for the storm and recover. Thank you to all first responders, governments, municipalities, non-profits, community groups, businesses, associations, media, workers, and individuals who have helped ensure the safety and support of Islanders.
In the most frightening of ways, Fiona has demonstrated the importance of municipal planning and emergency preparedness. She has also shown the many ways municipalities support communities — whether by helping residents prepare and stay informed, welcoming them into reception centres, or checking on the most vulnerable.
We will need this same spirit of working together during the long and difficult recovery ahead. The Federation will continue to support municipalities in all of their efforts. Please reach out to share your thoughts on the policies and supports that would help you in emergency situations. Thank you for all you have done and will do.
— Bruce MacDougall, FPEIM President