A new study predicts that climate change impacts on water – droughts, storms and floods – could globally cost $5.6 trillion US by 2050.
The report by GHD Aquanomics predicts Canadian losses from droughts, floods and storms will be about $139 billion which is about a fifth of one per cent of the nation’s Gross Domestic Product.
Flooding alone is expected to cost the Canadian economy more than $40 billion.
Storms are expected to cost more than $34 billion and droughts $14 billion.
Agriculture’s costs and losses are estimated at $4 billion.
Manufacturing and distribution sectors could suffer $64 billion in costs and losses, the consumer goods and retail sectors $26 billion, banking and insurance $21 billion, energy and utilities $14 billion.
The report said “we need to reorient our relationship with water. It’s time to move away from viewing it as a commodity to be controlled, instead recognising its intrinsic value; water is part of a natural cycle, the balance of which must be restored and maintained if we are to live sustainably and prosperously.
The study focuses on seven key countries across GHD’s footprint – Australia, Canada, China, the Philippines, the UAE, the UK and the US – and three US regions – Northeastern US, Southeastern US and Southwestern U.S.