Melting glacier with floating ice blocks

EXPERTISE

CLIMATE CHANGE

EXPERTISE

CLIMATE CHANGE AT EVERY SCALE

The industries which we serve all have a role in the changing climate. BGC is here to help you be a part of the global climate solution.

BGC provides a comprehensive suite of tools and services to help our clients understand, plan for, and work in a changing climate. Our expertise in applied earth sciences allows us to evaluate and project climate change impacts in hydrological and geological systems. Through our climatologists and close collaboration with climate modelling researchers, we provide answers and solutions when the past is no longer indicative of the future, and where traditional analytical methods need to be augmented with climate change scenarios. BGC bridges the gap between climate model projections and engineering solutions.

We work with our clients to evaluate potential effects of climate change by completing geohazard risk assessments, adaptation, and mitigation options analyses to allow our clients to proactively manage their assets. Our commitment to considering climate change in all our projects and integrate it at appropriate levels of effort helps us manage our clients’ risk to climate change effectively and sustainably and prepare them for the future. We also provide support for corporate sustainability reporting and annual financial statements. BGC actively monitors changes in reporting requirements for institutional lenders and insurances agencies to provide up-to-date information to our clients.

BGC’s climate expertise in meteorological instrumentation, observational and model data analysis, climate policy, and climate risk assessment is unparalleled in the engineering field. We integrate this expertise with our geotechnical proficiency in geohazards in all environments including mountains, glaciers, rivers, communities, and coastlines. BGC integrates climate change into our approach to geological engineering, enabling us to provide sound mitigative solutions that optimize climate resilience and decrease exposure to legal claims and regulatory reprimands. This unique approach results in reduced societal risk, improved social congruence, fostering community and stakeholder relationships, and satisfies lenders and governments’ needs for climate change related sustainability.

Climate Data Expertise

BGC’s approach to providing innovative solutions comes from our strong basis in earth and data sciences, and tackling the potential impacts of climate change is no different. We can provide our clients with a solid foundation of understanding and access to climate and meteorological data, including both historical and projected climate data. BGC also applies our broader instrumentation expertise to climate data, providing support for on-site climate monitoring or design of early warning systems. BGC’s climate experts have cumulatively decades of experience in translating climate data to more accessible formats for applications such as engineering design inputs, risk assessments, decision matrices or other cost-benefit analyses, and analysis in support of litigation.

Climate Change Risk Assessment (CCRA)

BGC utilizes a variety of climate observation, visualization, and projection tools to objectively and systematically assess and present the risks to assets in terms of direct and indirect losses, individually and sequentially for a geomorphologic-focused Climate Change Risk Assessment (CCRA).

Our assessment methods can be embedded in geospatial web applications (e.g., CambioTM) or in augmented reality tools (e.g., Clirio Apps) for visual interpretation of complex information. This dynamic visualization approach facilitates enhanced analysis and communication of complex information that is challenging to convey with static maps and drawings.

In keeping with requirements that an assessment be undertaken to determine how federally funded projects will contribute to or reduce carbon emissions, including carbon capture and sequestration, BGC’s CCRA can also include a sustainability assessment that provides information that may aid in reducing the project’s carbon footprint.

Geohazard Assessment & Climate Change

Most geohazards are affected by weather conditions, such as the timing, intensity, duration or frequency of rainfall. Changes in the climate can affect these factors, making geohazards such as flash flooding or post-wildfire landslides more likely. For example, glacial thinning and eventual loss of ice cover and/or snow cover can lead to a decrease in stream flows below a threshold required for industrial or agricultural water use, lesser flow volumes or a change in hydrographs and thus lead to production losses.

Together with our clients, BGC assesses the likely consequences for each geohazard and develops a CCRA matrix. Project risks can be prioritized following completion of a CCRA and implementation of risk reduction measures that are aimed to adapt, mitigate and increase resiliency of individual system components.

Benefits of these steps include increased project safety and a lower risk of unexpected losses resulting from climate change driven events. Such outcomes are attractive to lenders, regulators, investors, nearby communities, and the public.

Considering Climate Change in Hydrology

BGC uses our combined expertise in both climate science and hydrology to characterize the impacts of climate change on project work. Historical records alone can longer be used to inform the future. Our work in flood hazards includes providing public and private sectors clients with climate-adjusted floodplain maps at both regional and local scales. BGC has produced climate-adjusted precipitation Intensity-Duration-Frequency curves and climate-adjusted Flood Frequency-Magnitude relationships to inform engineering design. These examples show how BGC translates abstract climate data into practical knowledge to inform client decision making.

Providing Solutions to Climate Change Risks

Beyond identifying and quantifying changes in climate and the risks they pose, BGC can design practical and cost-efficient solutions to mitigate these risks. This includes quantifying uncertainties produced by data scarcity and model resolution, and accounting for likely future climate conditions in design specifications.

For example, assets that are at risk from debris flows triggered by severe weather events could be at increased risk of such hazards under future climate conditions. A CCRA can identify and quantify such changes and, if appropriate, those changes can be factored into asset redesign or design of an adaptive debris flow diversion structure that can be modified as future conditions demand.

The CCRA allows identification of critical system components that can be prioritized for monitoring, which would be designed to fill data gaps prior to the design and implementation of any adaptation or mitigation measure and would subsequently monitor conditions at the asset. Key uncertainties can be reduced to support informed decisions. BGC provides options for engineered structural protection tailored to suit expected hazards and account for projected changes in the hazard due to climate change.

Climate Change Mitigation

BGC is involved with various clients and research groups to tackle climate change on a broader scale. BGC’s expertise in geological and hydrological science and engineering can be applied to development of permanent carbon sequestration within geologic formations. We’ve partnered with researchers for initiatives to store carbon within mining or transportation infrastructure. BGC also applies our overall geological engineering expertise to non-emitting energy projects located in a variety of challenging terrain and environments.

Creating Resiliency – Read more about how we support our clients facing the impacts of climate change.

KEY CONTACTS

Climate Change Experts

Lukas Arenson

Principal Geotechnical Engineer

Climate Change Experts

Pablo Wainstein

Principal Hydraulic Civil Engineer

Climate Change Experts

Patrick Grover

Senior Hydrotechnical Engineer

Climate Change Experts

Karsten Shein

Senior Climatologist

Climate Change Experts

Kathryn Franklin

Geological Engineer

Climate Change Experts

Pascal Szeftel

Senior Hydrotechnical Engineer

Climate Change Experts

Julio Portocarrero

Senior Hydrotechnical Engineer

Climate Change Experts

Melissa Hairabedian

Senior Hydrologist

Climate Change Experts

Marc Olivier Trottier

Water Resources Engineer

Climate Change Experts

Kate Lunney

Geological Engineer