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Intact Announces $1.3 Million Commitment to Help Build More Resilient Communities

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Intact Adaptation Action Grants awarded to projects that are helping people and communities adapt to floods, wildfire and extreme heat

TORONTO, Nov. 24, 2020 /CNW/ - To help Canadians adapt to climate change and build more resilient communities, Intact Financial Corporation (TSX: IFC) is committing more than $1.3 million to five Canadian charitable partners. These partners are exploring real, concrete solutions to make our communities, our people and our economy more resilient.

"We need to act and reduce the effects of more frequent weather events by helping people and our communities adapt," said Diane Flanagan, Chair of the Intact Foundation and Vice President of Corporate Affairs and Communications, Intact Financial Corporation. "Our new partners are introducing innovative approaches to managing the effects of climate change and are helping to address avoidable human and economic losses."

Climate change is leading to more frequent and severe weather. In fact, extreme weather events in Canada have increased by a factor of five over the past 30 years and insured losses have more than quadrupled. And, the cost to society is much higher: for every $1 of insurable losses, there are $3 to $4 of uninsured losses paid by governments, businesses and individuals.

As a purpose-driven organization, Intact is here to help customers and society adapt to the impacts of climate change. Through the Intact Adaptation Action Grants, Intact is supporting projects that are helping to protect people from the effects of climate change — like floods, wildfires and extreme heat — and building more resilient communities.

2020 Partners

  • Coastal Action will use nature-based infrastructure– such as living shorelines, tidal wetlands and artificial headlands – to protect Mahone Bay, N.S., from coastal erosion, floods and contaminated runoff.

  • Credit Valley Conservation will test a smart blue roof on their office headquarters to reduce flooding and urban heat and promote rainwater reuse. It also involves learning how to scale this technology for use in local communities and across Canada.

  • Evergreen, as part of its new Climate-Ready Schools program, will create new design guidelines for school grounds using natural infrastructure to prevent floods and protect against heat and wind.

  • Fondation en environnement et en développement durable (led by CRE-Capitale Nationale) will use rain gardens, vegetated ditches and green parking lots to reduce floods and urban heat in Quebec City.

  • Gathering Voices Society will pilot and test a proactive fire management program with two First Nations communities in British Columbia. It involves surveying and monitoring forests, as well as prescribed burning and mechanical thinning to reduce wildfires.

Quick Facts

  • In 2015, Intact Financial Corporation helped establish the Intact Centre on Climate Adaptation at the University of Waterloo, committing nearly $10 million over 10 years.

  • In 2017 and 2018, Intact previously invested $2.3 million in 16 charitable partners through the Intact Adaptation Action Grants

  • Severe weather across Canada cost $1.3 billion in insured damage in 2019, according to Catastrophe Indices and Quantification Inc. and the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC). It was the seventh highest in insured losses on record.

  • In Canada, the annual cost of flooding will nearly triple from US$2.4 billion in 2010 to US$6.6 billion by 2030 if adaptation measures aren't taken. And the number of Canadians affected by floods will grow from 200,000 in 2010 to more than 350,000 in 20301.

  • About 60% of all Canadian cities, towns, settlements and Indigenous communities have a significant amount of land that interfaces with wildland and is therefore at risk from wildfires2.

  • Most communities threatened by wildfires are in regions whose burn areas are projected to increase by 50% to 200% due to climate change.3

  • Every dollar invested in disaster mitigation and climate change adaptation generates a savings of six dollars in future disaster costs.4

  • Nature-based adaptation solutions have multiple benefits, including regulating water flows, protecting shorelines, and cooling cities. They can also provide one-third of the climate mitigation needed between now and 2030 to keep global warming below 2⁰C5

  • Natural assets like wetlands, forests and ponds help communities in Canada better manage flood risk, while providing a range of other ecosystem benefits, and at savings ranging from $200,000 to $414 million6 compared to built infrastructure.

About Intact Financial Corporation
Intact Financial Corporation (TSX: IFC) is the largest provider of property and casualty (P&C) insurance in Canada and a leading provider of specialty insurance in North America, with over CAD$11 billion in total annual premiums. The Company has approximately 16,000 employees who serve more than five million personal, business and public sector clients through offices in Canada and the U.S.

In Canada, Intact distributes insurance under the Intact Insurance brand through a wide network of brokers, including its wholly-owned subsidiary BrokerLink, and directly to consumers through belairdirect. Frank Cowan Company, a leading MGA, distributes public entity insurance programs including risk and claims management services in Canada.

In the U.S., Intact Insurance Specialty Solutions provides a range of specialty insurance products and services through independent agencies, regional and national brokers, and wholesalers and managing general agencies. Products are underwritten by the insurance company subsidiaries of Intact Insurance Group USA, LLC.

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1 World Resources Institute, The number of people affected by floods will double by 2030 based onAqueduct Floods Methodology, April 2020

2 Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction, Estimating the benefits of Climate Resilient Buildings and Core Public Infrastructure, February 2020

3 Canadian Wildland Fire Strategy: a 10-year review and renewed call to action, Canadian Council of Forest Ministers, 2016

4 National Institute of Building Sciences, Natural Hazard Mitigation Saves: 2017 Interim Report, January 2018

5 Global Commission on Adaptation, "Adapt Now: A global call for leadership on climate resilience," September 2019

6 Municipal Natural Assets Initiative, Cohort 2 National Project Overview, February 2020

SOURCE Intact Financial Corporation

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