PICS has supported 33 projects undertaken by interdisciplinary research teams under its Phase I Strategic Research Plan. The projects were classified under the below five themes:
The Low Carbon Emissions Economy
PICS supports BC’s path toward developing a vibrant and diverse low-carbon economy. Research priorities under this theme include strengthening BC’s carbon pricing initiative, supporting renewable electricity generation development, accelerating energy efficiency, and reducing GHG emissions from BC’s transportation system, buildings and waste management systems.
Real and lasting changes in the ways we live, work and think are a crucial part of mitigating and adapting to climate change. This theme explores ways to mobilize British Columbians to think about and act on climate solutions, with the goal of building public support for policies and actions that support a green economy, ecological resilience, and sustainable communities, as well as meet GHG reduction targets.
Research under this theme seeks to understand the scale, pace and range of climate change impacts on BC’s natural ecosystems, and to develop management solutions that will maintain their viability, with an emphasis is on risk and adaptive management.
A society’s network of built structures, institutions and organizations, as well as the beliefs and behaviours of its people, shape the collective use of energy and materials and how communities both influence and respond to climate change. This theme explores the elements of a sustainable community—including densification, mixed land use, a net-zero energy system and a diverse local economy—and how to get there through planning and policy development.
Carbon Management in BC Forests
Forests play a major role in the planetary carbon cycle via the constant uptake (sink) and release (source) of greenhouse gases such as CO2 and methane. This theme assesses the impacts of climate change—such as drought, wildfire and new pests and diseases—on BC’s forest ecosystems, as well as the related socio-economic implications. Priorities include developing quantitative carbon and carbon-offsets accounting methods, exploring forests’ bioenergy and carbon storage potential, and improving sustainable forest management policies.