Changes in temperature, rain and sea level may shift the timing of growth, migration and disturbance cycles of plants and animals.


Changes in temperature, rain, and sea levels may alter where plants and animals can thrive. This could also lengthen our crop growing season.

Changing climate will alter the environmental patterns within our region. Changes in temperature, rain, and sea level may result in: 

  • Changes in the timing of growth
  • Changes in animal migration patterns
  • Disturbance of plant and animal cycles
  • A shift in the number of domestic and wild plants and animals 
  • Changes to where plants and animals are able to live


The variety of plant and animal species, ecosystems, and ecological processes are collectively called 'biodiversity'. 

Our region is a biodiversity "hot spot." Vancouver’s landscape, both natural and constructed, contributes to the region's biodiversity.

Probable changes in our region's biodiversity include: 

  • Difficulty for some species to thrive in warmer, wetter falls and drier summers 
  • More severe impacts of tree disease due to heat stress. 
  • Reduction of coastal feeding grounds and homes of birds and other animals due to sea level rise
  • Decrease in salmon populations due to warmer rivers and ocean 
  • New pests and invasive plants
  • Impacts to our urban forests and green spaces due to more frequent extreme weather events

Growing food

As our city warms, it could mean a longer growing season and milder, shorter winters. This could create new opportunities for farming in certain areas, and for new crops to grow. 

Climate change will also introduce new pests and diseases, a challenge for gardeners and farmers.


What we're expecting

Increase in the length of the growing season.
Increase in warm days that support plant growth.
Increase in consecutive dry days in summer



More rain on the wettest days.

Source: Pacific Climate Impacts Consortium Climate Change (PCIC) | Read the PCIC summary

Actions: how we're responding to changing ecosystems

  • Our Climate Change Adaptation Strategy made recommendations for increasing the long-term health of urban forests, green spaces, and trees through the development of an Urban Forest Management Plan
  • We have adopted the Biodiversity Strategy to protect, enhance, and restore biodiversity throughout our parks and landscapes
  • We are looking at what species we plant to ensure they are resilient to the changing climate.