The City of Spruce Grove received $78,200 in grant proceeds for the development of a Community Capacity Building Education Program.
Morrison Hershfield supported the City in developing a program to help communicate climate change impacts and build individual and community capacity to respond to climate change through behaviours and decision-making in the four categories of resilient vegetation, water management, resilient homes, and emergency preparedness.
The project was funded in part by the Government of Alberta through the Municipal Climate Change Action Centre’s Climate Resilience Capacity Building Program.
The City of Spruce Grove is a small community of close to 39,000 and is located approximately 11km west of Edmonton, AB. The City self-identifies as a great place to live, work, and raise a family with a diverse mix of industry, commerce, and community.
Building on the momentum of the City’s Climate Change Action Plan (CCAP) which was accepted by Council in 2022, this project was completed to engage stakeholders on the development of a community capacity building education program and to encourage community action on climate resilience. While the CCAP includes both adaptation and mitigation efforts, this project focused specifically on individual adaptation actions that could be undertaken by community members.
This project involved the completion of a jurisdictional scan to understand how other municipalities are approaching climate literacy and education in their communities.
A series of communication materials to communicate climate change impacts and build community climate resilience capacity were developed. These materials were created using input gathered from virtual and in-person interviews with key stakeholders in the Spruce Grove region, including the Youth Advisory Committee, community groups, and City staff.
The final deliverables for this project include a final research summary, a briefing memo to Council, as well as a number of communication tools including a series of social media posts proposing actions individuals can take, website content, water conservation flashcards, an infographic summarizing the CCAP and connecting it to individuals actions in an easy to understand format, and the pilot of an experiential education program.
Actions support the four primary adaptation categories of resilient vegetation, water management, resilient homes, and emergency preparedness.
In completing this work, the project team learned that local climate risks of concern include hotter summers, reduced snowpack, and water stress/drought. In particular, water conservation was identified as an important practice for mitigating community water demand and risk of supply shortages.
The educational materials created through this project will be available to residents to learn about actions they can take for climate resilience and water conservation at home and in their community.
Through empowering individuals with climate knowledge and building awareness, this project will continue to promote community action and build resilience to climate impacts.
Environmental sustainability is one of the main themes in City Council’s 2022-2025 Strategic Plan, which includes the goal of making the City, our residents, and our infrastructure more resilient to the effects of climate change. Participating in the Climate Resilience Capacity Building program has supported this goal through the development of educational materials and offering a hands-on learning opportunity with an experiential workshop on water conservation to help empower community members to take individual action on climate resilience.
Jeff Acker, City of Spruce Grove Mayor
Read more about the Climate Resilience Capacity Building Program