Canadians express concerns over climate change and wildfires in annual survey

March 21, 2024

First Onsite releases annual Weather and Property Survey findings

First Onsite Property Restoration has announced the findings of its annual Weather and Property Survey on the first day of spring, March 19.

The survey, aimed at understanding Canadians’ concerns and perceptions about weather patterns and their readiness to handle property damage, highlighted significant worries about climate change, spring flooding, wildfires, landslides, and other severe weather events.

Jim Mandeville, Senior Vice President of First Onsite Property Restoration, emphasized the importance of the survey: “We conduct this survey every year to get a benchmark of Canadian attitudes, weather worries, and concerns that business and homeowners have for their properties.

“People are aware that storms aren’t acting like they used to, and we are seeing an increase in all types of property damage from weather events.”

Climate change and regional concerns

The survey revealed that 73% of respondents are worried about the effects of climate change on extreme weather and disasters, with the highest concern in Quebec (79%), British Columbia (77%), and Ontario (75%).

Wildfires and smoke are major worries, especially in British Columbia and Alberta, where 82% and 76% of respondents, respectively, expressed concerns.

The emergency preparedness minister’s warning that this year’s wildfire season could surpass last year’s record-breaking season underscores these fears.

Threats to property and emergency preparedness

In terms of property threats, 61% of Canadians are concerned about the risk of mold after flooding, while 79% worry about personal or family safety during weather-related disasters.

The survey also highlighted anxieties regarding the cost of major renovations, the level of preparedness for disasters, and whether insurance coverage is adequate.

Jim Mandeville added: “The increased occurrence and intensity of catastrophic weather events is a constant driver for homeowners, businesses, and communities to be more resilient and better prepared for potential threats.”

FSJA Comment

The survey conducted by First Onsite Property Restoration sheds light on the growing concerns among Canadians regarding climate change and its impact on severe weather events.

With a significant portion of the population worried about the implications for their properties and personal safety, the findings underscore the need for increased awareness and preparedness.

As extreme weather events become more frequent and intense, the importance of resilience and readiness cannot be overstated.

This survey serves as a reminder of the challenges posed by climate change and the collective effort required to mitigate its effects on communities across Canada.

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