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Podcast Transcripts

Lake Simcoe Sessions Podcast

Episode 1: Climate Change in the Lake Simcoe Watershed

The following is a transcription from an audio recording. The transcript may be inaccurate due to inaudible sections or transcription errors. The transcript may also include repeated words, errors in punctuation, contractions or corrected phrases that occurred in the conversation captured in the recording. This episode was transcribed using

This episode features two speakers:

  • Katie Biddie – Podcast Host and Outdoor Educator at Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority
  • Fabio Tonto- Special Guest and Climate Change Specialist at Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority​

Introduction with music: 0:03

Hi and welcome to Lake Simcoe sessions, a podcast hosted by the Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority. I’m your host Katie Biddie. Join me as I chat with the experts to learn all about how climate change is impacting us and our ecosystems right here in the lakes and co region. Our goal is to discuss how we can all work together to build a resilient future for our watershed. This podcast is being recorded on the lands of the Williams treaties First Nations, we are committed to renewing our relationships with First Nations peoples and deeply appreciate their historic connection and unwavering care for this land and water. This podcast has been made possible thanks to the generous support from the RBC Foundation, and the Lake Simcoe Conservation Foundation. 

Katie Biddie: 0:57

Hi, and welcome to Lake Simcoe sessions. My name is Katie and I will be hosting this podcast and right now you are listening to episode number one of five episodes that we have planned all to be released over the next five months. across each of these episodes, you’re going to have the opportunity to learn about climate change and how it is affecting the US right here in the Lake Simcoe region. You’re going to be learning from experts in the field of conservation, and at the end of each episode, there will be a call to action. So this is going to be something that you can do as a local citizen to be a part of a more connected and a more sustainable future for our region. So thank you so much for being here and listening with me along the way. I’ll be honest, this is my first time hosting a podcast. So please bear with me. Over the past year and through the covid 19 pandemic, I got really hooked on listening to podcast. I was missing listening to the radio on my drive to work when we shifted to working from home. So a friend of mine suggested a few podcasts and yeah, I just got totally hooked. I love listening when I’m cooking. When I’m out walking the dog or even just like right before bed, I love to throw in a podcast and learn about something brand new. And that’s kind of to me, the amazing thing about podcasts is you it gives you the chance to learn about so many different topics. I’m an educator, I’m a teacher, and so immediately when I started listening to podcasts, I realized that these this was an amazing opportunity to teach people and to share the amazing work that we do at the Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority. So that brings us to where we are right now recording this first initial, inaugural podcast. So I just told you I was a teacher but what I do is I work for the Education Department at the Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority. From here on out, I’m going to call it LSRCA for short. So if you hear me say LSRCA I’m talking about the Lake Simcoe Conservation Authority. LSRCA is one of 36 conservation authorities across Ontario. And the goal or the mandate of conservation authorities is to protect, restore and manage the most populated watersheds in Ontario. Now when I say watershed, what I’m referring to is any area of land that is drained by a common river or into a common body of water. So in our case, we manage the Lake Simcoe watershed. Sometimes I like to explain watersheds like a bowl of cereal bowl, the highest points of the watershed or the outside of the bowl. Those are what we call the headwaters and then by gravity and by the nature of water flowing downwards, the water will flow through rivers and tributaries and all end up in a common space which in our case is the Lake Simcoe. Now the Lake Simcoe watershed sweeps across like over 3000 square kilometers. So our watershed starts as far north as the Oro moraine in Orillia. And as far south as the oak ridges moraine, down in Aurora or near New Market, so the watershed is really a huge region. It includes York and Durham regions, Simcoe county, the city of Kawartha lake, Barrie are all included in the Lake Simcoe watershed. If you’re not sure if you live in the Lake Simcoe watershed or if you just want to find out what watershed you do live in, you can check out conservation Ontario’s website at they have a map that shows the jurisdiction of all 36 conservation authorities in Ontario. So what you can do is find where you live and figure out which conservation authorities jurisdiction you are under. Now, as for me, not only do I work in the Lake Simcoe region, but I actually myself am a resident of the Lake Simcoe watershed. I live here in Barrie, and I’m actually really lucky because I live walking distance from the waterfront trail around kempenfelt Bay. So I feel very connected to like some co I walk my dog around the lake trail almost every day. And something I find interesting about being a watershed resident that lives near the lake is it’s really easy for me as someone who lives so close and you know interacts with the actual body of water our watershed is named after. It’s easy for me to feel connected. But it’s important to remember that the health of Lake Simcoe depends on the health of the whole watershed. So even if you’re listening today from Newmarket Aurora, Oxbridge rock Township, anywhere in the Lake Simcoe watershed, the health of the streams, and the creeks and the tributaries in your neighborhoods, ultimately affects the health of Lake Simcoe. So it’s kind of a beautiful thing, really, if you think about it, we have all these people that are connected by the water and the way it moves, and the way it moves is connected by the way the land is shaped. I think that’s really, one of the most amazing things about conservation authorities here in Ontario, is that we work in the jurisdiction that’s being made by the shape of the land and the direction of the water. So our jurisdiction doesn’t care about boundary lines between municipalities, we focus on a watershed based approach. 

So to start this learning journey, we have to talk about climate change. What is it? What’s causing it, and where are we headed in the future. Climate change is the gradual change in average weather conditions like temperature and rainfall that we experience here on Earth. So scientists agree that the Earth has been getting warmer in the past 50 to 100 years. And they also agree that that is due to human activity. Now, the reason that the earth is warm enough to sustain life at all is because there are gases in the Earth’s atmosphere that block heat from escaping. We call this the greenhouse effect, because it works similarly to the glass walls of a greenhouse. So the greenhouse layer traps some of the heat that comes from the sun and ultimately warms our planet. Now, the problem is, since the Industrial Revolution, humans have been adversely affecting the greenhouse effect, we are releasing greenhouse gases at an alarming rate through activities like burning fossil fuels, to power our cars and factories. And we’re also removing natural features like forests or wetlands that are really good at harnessing those greenhouse gases. The result is just an overall increase in greenhouse gases in our atmosphere. And that means that those greenhouse gases trap more heat within our atmosphere. A metaphor I like to use when I teach climate change is that the greenhouse layer serves kind of like a blanket. The blanket we used to have on planet Earth was perfect. It kept us comfortable, it kept us warm, but not too warm. The new blanket that we’ve created, is now much thicker, much heavier, and ultimately traps more heat. So the problem is now we’re getting hot, right, our blanket is too warm, and our we’re getting too warm underneath it. greenhouse gas emissions are a global problem. But the reality of it is that climate change also affects us on a very local level. And in fact, that’s already happening. I realized in the past year that some of our best chances to deal with climate change and make positive changes for the future. They have to start right here at the local level. So I want to learn what we can do as Lake Simcoe region citizens to create the best possible future for our land and Lake. And to learn more about local climate change. I’m really excited to welcome my very first special guest. Today we’ll be hearing from Fabio Tonto who is the climate change specialist here at LSRCA. Okay, so hello, Fabio. Welcome to the Lake Simcoe sessions podcast. I’m super excited to have you here as my first special guest today. Fabio, you are the climate change specialist at Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority. I was wondering if you wanted to kick it off by telling us a little bit about yourself and your background and how you ended up in this role as climate change specialist. 

Fabio Tonto 8:59

Thanks for having me here. I’m a graduate of University of Guelph, and environmental engineering. So which is a bit unusual for working in climate change. It’s not really a climate background, but I really came to this from working through water. So I worked at a water technology company dealing with stormwater, I actually went back and did a master’s in public policy in the capacitor University. And that kind of helped me transition into the NGO (Non-governmental Organization) world where I was working on water, but then with climate change with the climate change department in the NGO, and that kind of, I found that work to be quite interesting, as well as I saw a little bit of where things were going with climate change water and I thought that would be a really interesting field to get into. So from there, I basically transitioned into the Conservation Authority world, I worked for TRCA (Toronto Region Conservation Authority) for that in a role that really looked at investigating some of the issues around water and climate change and that led me here today to work for the Lake Simcoe, where it’s really a strong, pure climate change role. But it’s been a great kind of little adventure. 

Katie Biddie 10:10

Right? Yeah. And you’re relatively new to the team here at LSRCA. When did you start working for the authority? 

Fabio Tonto 10:17

Yeah, I started in October 2020 mid-pandemic. That was a fun experience. But everybody’s been great. working from home has been a bit strange, but it’s been wonderful to work with the team. And everyone’s been great about it.

Katie Biddie 10:35

Yeah, for sure. Exactly. adapting to the new world with the COVID-19 pandemic. That’s amazing. And what Fabio, I’m just curious, what is your day to day job look like? Like? So you work in climate change? But what do you do you wake up in the morning and log into your computer? What’s what are some of the key tasks that you work on? 

Fabio Tonto 10:54

Yeah, a lot of it is working in with partnership. So that might be partnerships internally with the organization. So there may be different groups internally that are dealing with projects that are affected by climate change, or have an aspect of climate change to them, whether it may, it may be applying for funding for specific projects, and they need to be able to make sure that it considers climate change either adaptation or mitigation. A lot of what we do is to work with our partners externally to the organization. So some of the municipalities and trying to help them either adopt or mitigate or just basically develop some relationships with some of their peer municipalities and information share and things like that. So basically, we’re trying to coordinate and both internally and externally from the organization. 

Katie Biddie 11:49

Nice. So you’re kind of like an amazing resource for all the municipalities, right? They can tap on your shoulder for your expertise in the field of climate change. 

Fabio Tonto 11:57

Yeah, that’s what I’m here for! 

Katie Biddie 11:58

That’s really cool. Now, what I was hoping to talk about today with you was an overview or a big picture of what we are expecting to see right here in the Lake Simcoe region around climate change. So I was hoping you’d be able to tell me a little bit more about the projections that we have for our region, and what like, you know, 50 years from now, what is life in the Lake Simcoe region going to look like? 

Fabio Tonto 12:24

Okay, well, the climate projections that we are seeing in for the Lake Simcoe region, we’re looking at an increase of about up to about 5.5 degrees Celsius on average for our watershed. Now, that may not sound like a lot, you know, everybody in Canada, I think, could use with a few more degrees of warmth. I 20, if you can imagine, I mean, if you’re looking if you go and look where do you find annual mean temperatures that are about five and a half degrees more, you’re looking into the United States, I think around the Carolinas in that area. And if you were to imagine walking through a forest in the Carolinas, you’d see, certainly you’d see different trees and see different plants and different animals, and they’ve adapted to that climate regime, what you see down in the Carolinas now, in about 40 years time, you’re expecting that same climate regime, those same temperatures to be up here. 40-50 years is not enough time for the plants and animals that we have now to really adapt to that new to that new climate. Nor is it enough time for all of these new trees and plants and animals to show up and grow and establish themselves. So we’re into it’s a little bit scary to think that that the temperatures could change, but everything around us hasn’t had the opportunity to change along with it. 

Katie Biddie 13:44

Right? And about when do you think or when is it projected to reach that five and a half degree increase? Like what year? 

Fabio Tonto 13:52

So about the 2080’s. 

Katie Biddie 13:53

2080’s. And I feel like on top of even the animals and plants, also people, right, like that’s a five and a half degree increase that’s going to change our seasons and like a lot of what we do, right, like, I think I walk I live here and Barrie and I walk on the waterfront trail Kempenfelt Bay in the winter, I see all the ice fishing and all the people out hiking on the ice. And I mean, five and a half degrees increase there. We might not even see ice on the lake in 2018. 

Fabio Tonto 14:22

Yeah, absolutely. I mean, I think the idea, like kind of the traditional view of Canadian life in the winter is playing pond hockey and that, unfortunately, maybe a thing of the past if these temperatures continue as they’re projected to right now.

Katie Biddie 14:36

Absolutely. And so and I guess it would also as much as that’s our projection right here. It’s also going to you know, it’s going to warm all over the planet. So the animals and the birds and the trees, everything that we see here, they might not have a chance to move north either. Right. So we might lose some of these species or biodiversity. 

Fabio Tonto 14:57

Exactly Yeah. Which is what we have here may not have a chance to move forward. And then what’s kind of more well adapted to those temperatures might not have a chance to establish themselves either. But certainly, you know, that’s part of the adaptation mindset is that we as humans can, hopefully, as these changes occur, try to help things along. 

Katie Biddie 15:20

Right. Oh, that’s cool. And when it when it comes to so it’s going to get warmer. But can we expect any other changes in our weather? Like any changes in the rain or the snow? I guess, maybe snow will be a thing of the past, right? 

Fabio Tonto 15:35

I think overall with what the changes are going to look like is, we’re going to see the shortening of what we’ve called what people call the shoulder seasons. So spring, and fall are going to become a little bit shorter. And we’re expecting more intense weather overall, certainly, with rainfall, we’re expecting storms to come in and have a lot more rain be a little bit shorter and more intense. And unfortunately, what that means is, even though you might be having more water falling, it could actually result, kind of paradoxically, in drought, because although more water is falling, it’s not going to have enough time to get into the ground and absorb and turn into groundwater, which is where we get our drink, or some places get our drinking water from. So we’re going to have more rain, but it’s actually going to may result in drought. And then also with that more rain, more intense rain, we can expect that there may be some more flooding. And so those are a couple challenges as well, for municipalities and conservation authorities on how to adapt.

Katie Biddie 16:35

Right, it’s like counterintuitive, there’s going to be more drought, but then also more flooding in our future. 

Fabio Tonto 16:40

it’s the worst of both worlds, 

Katie Biddie 16:42

…the worst of both worlds! And Fabio I was wondering too, these projections, like five and a half degrees and more flooding, more drought, is that just something that scientists are predicting? Or how do scientists sort of get these projections? Are they just guesses? 

Fabio Tonto 16:59

Yeah, it’s, it’s really it’s funny, because it’s probably really, I would say, very simple and also extremely complicated. So they use climate models to do this. And what a climate model is, basically trying to mimic what the world system looks like, as far as air temperature, water temperature, land temperature, and they use the input of energy from the sun. And they try to model what it’s like you have the sun going through the atmosphere with things like the carbon in the atmosphere of the ozone layer, and all of these things that we know exist, and we’ve measured, and you’re trying to model that for the next kind of 50 to 100 years. And it sounds kind of simple. And you just kind of the inputs can be just, you know, the heat from the sun, and then some of the, you’re putting in water and you’re putting in land. But to try to get all of that correct is extraordinarily difficult. It’s basic, basic physics, but it’s really, really difficult to get that precise. 

Katie Biddie 18:04

Right? So we use the climate models to sort of help us understand what to expect, like they’re sophisticated, almost computer systems that allow us to probably pretty precisely though, guess what’s going to happen? 

Fabio Tonto 18:18

yeah, you have a good sense of what’s going to happen by running these models over and over. And they test these models. So they take a look at what they would have predicted in the past for the present to look like and see how correct are they and that allows them to, to kind of make sure that these models are working in a in a relatively accurate fashion. But when you’re looking at the future, one of the problems with modeling in general is that the future is unknown. And that’s why we can’t just say we know definitely what’s going to happen. And we have to come up with scenarios of what the future might look like. 

Katie Biddie 18:54

Right? No one has a crystal ball. So we can do our best to guess and control some of maybe the variables, but we’ll never be able to say for sure this is what the future is going to be. 

Fabio Tonto 19:04


Katie Biddie 19:04

And with a five and a half degrees by 2080 projection you were telling us about is that, like, Is that what’s going to happen if we just continue our lives without, you know, taking any action towards climate change? Or is that like, what’s that based on? 

Fabio Tonto 19:21

Yeah, so basically, when they develop these models, what they do is they have to put in these kind of guesses of what the future might look like. And you may have heard a term called RCP or representative concentration pathway. And really what that is, is it’s a kind of like a little story about what the future might look like. So what that five and a half degrees is based on is a story in the future in where we’re business. We’re doing business as usual, where we’re not really reducing our greenhouse gas emissions, and the population is increasing. And we’re cutting down more trees. So it’s a it’s a kind of a doom and gloom scenario for the future which was intended to be kind of a worst case scenario. But what we’re finding right now, unfortunately, is that our, our greenhouse gas emissions and our temperatures seem to be following this pathway. Even though, you know, we’re just starting to do some, some kind of mitigation work and we’re trying to reduce our emissions. There are other pathways, and when you see projections, oftentimes you might see another one called 4.5, which is kind of looking at a world in which the emissions would peak in in 2040. And then you start to see some mitigation actions. So then you’ll start to see the carbon, the carbon numbers start to come down. And that’s a bit of a bit of a better scenario. It’s not ideal, but it’s, it’s something that we’re actually still working towards. 

Katie Biddie 20:52

Right. So the, you know, five and a half degrees by 2080, is what’s going to happen if we don’t do anything and just correct on the path we’re on. But there’s still hope. Right? And if we start to to make major changes in our global emissions, or even like our local emissions, there’s a chance we won’t reach that point by 2080.

Fabio Tonto 21:09

Absolutely. And I think that I think the standard right now for most organizations is to look at the kind of the worst case scenario, which is 8.5. But there are already some conversations happening in kind of a climate change world saying, well, actually, we should really be looking at something else. Because you know, already, governments are putting in policies, we’re starting to see electric vehicles, and we’re starting to see things happen, that would not be part of that story that the 8.5 scenario tells. So maybe we should be looking at alternatives. 

Katie Biddie 21:40

Right? Well, that’s kind of optimistic. Very nice to hear that. Right. With that said, though, the pressure still on and like we, in many ways, it is good to consider the worst case scenario or the original model, because it might help kick our butts into gear, right. And make us want a solution. 

Fabio Tonto 22:00

Yeah! And I think it’s a motivation. And it’s also we need to be prepared, because those good strategies and techniques that we’re hoping to employ and reduce our carbon emissions, it hasn’t happened yet. So we need to, we need to be on top of this as if it doesn’t happen, unfortunately. 

Katie Biddie 22:17

Gotcha. Yeah, for sure. So when it comes to, like local action plans around climate change, or like, what our municipalities or what we’re doing at the Conservation Authority, how do we respond? So we’ve figured out what we can expect in the future around climate change? What what are we doing right now to handle that?

Fabio Tonto 22:38

Well, there’s there’s kind of two areas in general that people look at with climate change that, that they that when they talk about kind of doing some kind of climate action, one would be mitigation. And so when you’re talking mitigation, that is stopping climate change. And by stopping climate change, you’re looking at reducing or eliminating any greenhouse gas emissions. So like carbon dioxide, or methane, and that type of thing. At LSRCA, we have a mitigation plan, we have a corporate carbon reduction strategy as well. And both of these are looking at to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions of our organization, and how we might help some of our municipalities reduce their greenhouse gas emissions as well. It also looks at at sequestering carbon and pulling some carbon. So things like trees will actually pull some carbon out of the atmosphere. And that can help reduce the effect of more greenhouse gas emissions. So that’s all kind of one package of some of the work that we do. Also, there’s adaptation work, and that is taking a look at the reality that, you know, climate change is happening, and we need to be prepared for it. So around adaptation work, we’re looking at helping our business or as an organization and some of our municipalities make sure that as the climate changes, that we’re prepared for it, in what we do and how we do things.

Katie Biddie 24:04

Right. So mitigation is sort of like preventing climate change from getting worse, and adaptation is more just dealing with it. Because even if we mitigate it right now, it’s kind of inevitable that we are going to experience some form of climate change. 

Fabio Tonto 24:18

Absolutely. I mean, I’d say we probably are already experiencing it. And even if we were to stop all with the increased carbon, the carbon is already in the air, there’s enough carbon in the atmosphere to keep the climate changing for for at least, you know, another decade or so. So we’re kind of locked into a certain amount of climate change already. 

Katie Biddie 24:36

Right, we’re already past some point of no return for climate change. And so mitigation would be things like, you know, planting trees then and like you said that electric vehicles reducing our greenhouse gas emissions in our communities. What would be some examples of adaptations like how can we adapt to climate change?

Fabio Tonto 24:53

Well, there’s different ways you can adapt to climate change and sometimes they actually take care of both So planting a tree, for example, is a great action because you’re going to pull some carbon out of the atmosphere. But then some of the problems with climate change that resolve that could be people having a difficult time in the heat, or a building getting too hot is by providing some shade a tree can help mitigate some of that. As well, trees pull out a lot of water from they intercept water for as it rains, and they the roots pull up water and they evapotranspirate and get rid of water, that can actually help with flooding- if you have trees. So things like that, you can actually take double action. But then there are other, I’d say more human sides of adaptation things like for example, if you’re working in it in education, and you take school groups out snowshoeing, well, adaptation might be the realization that we’re not going to have as many snow days in the future as we do now. So maybe we have to think of alternative programming for the future. So that if we don’t have snow, we can adapt and do something else instead. So it’s not always a piece of hard infrastructure. It could just be some behavior changes. 

Katie Biddie 26:08

Right, some things that we do differently in the future, we’re adapting our lifestyle are adapting to things we do for fun, because we have to meet the new environmental conditions. Interesting. And when it comes to individuals, like, you know, I imagine a lot of our listeners, you know, might not work in the environmental field or might not work even in municipal government or anything. So what are some of the things that an individual who lives in the Lake Simcoe region can do to both mitigate climate change and also be prepared to adapt to it? 

Fabio Tonto 26:42

Yeah, I would say that, you know, like we just mentioned, planting a tree is a great is a great option, you know, put it put a tree in your front, your front yard, the more, the more that we get, the better. And one of the things LSRCA is doing as well as many of the municipalities is we’re changing the trees that we’re planting, we’re not planting the same trees necessarily today, that we would have 20 years ago or 30 years ago, because the trees that we when we plant a tree, we’re considering this idea that the climate is going to change. So these trees are going to be surviving in the future. As far as mitigating climate change, some of some of it is a little bit obvious. As far as Try not to drive your car is much. One that’s maybe less obvious that I’ll admit, that I’m not the best on is reducing our consumption of meat on the production of meat is a big greenhouse gas emitter. And so I you know, I’ve tried to reduce my consumption of meat, I’m not a vegetarian, but I do reduce it. And I think even just that change, if everybody could reduce a little bit that would be that would make a huge difference to the planet. 

Katie Biddie 27:47

Absolutely. I was talking to a friend of mine, and I was telling her how I wanted to go vegetarian, but I was like, oh, but I just I love chicken fingers I know it sounds weird, I’m like a big kid. And I love like chicken fingers or fried chicken. And she was like, “well, then Katie, go vegetarian…and just eat chicken fingers. Like if you if you go vegetarian, you’re still going to, like make a difference, even if you sometimes have chicken fingers” So I thought that was like a good way to think. Right? Like, give up the parts you can and that’s still going to make a difference. Yeah, definitely. Nice. And I guess just the last thing here that I’m curious, about Fabio is… Climate change it’s stressful. Like I think it’s a conversation that a lot of us, like, I know, personally, I’m interested in and I want to have, but sometimes I leave conversations about climate change, feeling like doom and gloom and stressed and like, I feel so small in such a big system, right? Like, I don’t make an impact. So I guess what I’m wondering is you work in the field, what gives you hope about climate change? What makes you not want to, like crawl under your bed every night? Laughter. 

Fabio Tonto 28:32

Well, I’d say that we’re, I’d say that. One of the bright lights that we’re seeing is are things like the electrification of the automobile, we’re starting to see more electric cars, hybrid cars, that type of thing. But I think and this is kind of a little bit of a paradox, what gives me the most hope is is actually some of the financial markets. What you don’t really think of money as being a very kind of good force in the world. But the idea is right now what we’re seeing if you want to, even in the heart of Texas, one of the most kind of oil dependent places in the world, if you want to invest in just an oil Fund, which is this is a purely money thing. I’m not a lot of money person, but I understand kind of where there are people who understand it, have explained it to me. And they say, you can’t actually invest in oil anymore. If you’re not showing some kind of green energy as part of your portfolio and you’re not showing that you’re thinking about the future. Nobody will. Nobody will lend you the money, because they recognize that when the future is with green energy, and that oil and some of the fossil fuels is really something of the past and that as a planet, we’re really transitioning away from that. So if the money is going away from oil, then I would say, that’s a good sign. Right? That is a good, that’s a good sign that the future the future is a green future. 

Katie Biddie 29:51

Right? If we only want to if people only want to put their money in a better future, then that means we’re building a better future. Absolutely. Cool. I know like for me, I so I work in education. And so I get to work with students talking about climate change. And sometimes I feel like they also are the ones that give me hope, because I’m like, you know, they’re the policymakers of the future. They’re the inventors of the future. Right? And I do have a lot of hope that, that they’re going to be the solution, or maybe not the solution, but help not be part of the problem. Yeah, definitely. And I also think, like, sometimes for me to stay focused on, you know, being sustainable and not contributing. What gives me hope is imagining a great future. So when you look at the targets, it’s like, we have to reduce our greenhouse gases, I live in bury, so I’ve seen our municipal targets, and they’re scary, like, you see where we are right now, you see where we need to be by 2040, or 2050. And they’re really intimidating, because it feels like daunting. It’s like, we’re never going to get there. But then I remind myself, I’m like, OK, but when we get there, I’m not going to think if I’m going to be positive here. When we get there and reach these targets. Imagine how amazing it’s going to be there’s going to be like, you know, pedestrian friendly streets, and people are going to be riding their bikes, and there’s going to be urban parks. And so imagining all those really amazing things helps me to stay positive. Right and stay. stay on track with our goals. Awesome. Is there anything else Fabio? Do you want to share? Before we wrap up, wrap up here, anything else you would want to send a listener home thinking about in our podcast? 

Fabio Tonto 31:57

Well, I would just like to encourage everybody not to get too down about about it, I’d say that. Really what we can make this these changes that are that that we recognize the fact that we’ve identified it, we know we need to do we have the technology, we have the ability, and I think we just need to do it and maybe get some of the political will. And that’s something that I think all of us can, can share in moving forward. 

Katie Biddie 32:23

Awesome. Yeah, that’s so important, right? Stay on track, and don’t don’t feel overwhelmed right now. Awesome. Well, that’s great. Thank you so much, Fabio for being here with us today on lake simcoe sessions. I know I learned a lot, and I’m sure our listeners did as well. So yeah, thank you so much for being here and we’ll talk to you soon. 

Fabio Tonto 32:44

Thanks, Katie. 

Katie Biddie 32:48

If you’re interested in learning more about the climate projections for the Lake Simcoe watershed, you can find a really nice infographic on our website. I’ll put the link to the infographic in the description of this podcast. Or if you want, you can just search in your browser, watershed trends and projections for LSRCA, and it will pop up, I think it’ll be the first hit on your search. This infographic will just show you the overview of all the projections in our region. So what we can expect by the year 2050, what we can expect by the year 2080. It talks not only about temperature, but also about precipitation events, and even how long we expect our growing season to become. So it’s a really good starting place to show us what we what we are projecting to happen in our region. I hope you enjoyed hearing from Fabio as much as I enjoyed interviewing him there. Such a wealth of knowledge and so passionate about climate change. Now, I told you at the beginning that I was going to end each episode of these podcasts with a call to action. So a something that you can do as a listener to be a part of the climate change solution, whether it’s adapting or mitigating climate change. Now, today’s call to action is actually just sort of a brainstorm project that I want you to do for for your school or for your workplace or even just for your home or community. What I want you to do is I want you to think of three ways that you can mitigate climate change. So those are things like fabulous telling us about those are actually decreasing your greenhouse gas emissions or increasing your greenhouse gas sinks. So for example, planting trees will absorb carbon dioxide, and therefore that mitigates climate change. And then I also want you to think of three ways that you can begin planning to adapt to climate change. So thinking about how you can prepare maybe your school or your home or your workplace, for changing weather conditions in the future. Now, please feel free to tag us or share; share what you’ve come up with and tag us on social media. We are at LSRCA on Twitter​, or you can even share what you came up with by emailing me. My email address is I also encourage you to look up your municipality’s climate change plans, check out and see if you can find whether there’s already an adaptation or mitigation strategy in place where you live, and see what their plans are to, you know, decrease the greenhouse gas emissions where you live. It’s really interesting to do a little research and see how a lot of municipalities in Ontario are responding in similar ways. But their approaches change depending on the specifics of wherever you live, which is really kind of cool. So instead of thinking about climate change from such a global perspective, check out what’s happening right on the ground where you live. You can also check out the LSRCA’s adaptation and mitigation strategies all link those in the description of this podcast as well. And that brings us to the end of the first episode of Lake Simcoe sessions. Thank you so much for listening along the way. I hope you enjoyed listening as much as I enjoyed recording that. Stay tuned because we have a good episode lined up for you next time, we are going to be talking about how climate change is impacting the field of Forestry. My special guest is going to be Phil Davies, who is the manager of forestry here at LSRCA. Fabio mentioned in his interview about how climate change is actually going to change the species that exists in our forest, and we can expect to see different types of trees in our forests in the future. Phil is going to give us a good background about how forests looked in our region in the past, and how they’re going to look, you know, 60 years in the future. It’s going to be a good one, especially because Phil is a pretty funny guy, and he’s got some of the best dad jokes that I’ve ever heard. You have that to look forward to in our next episode. Thanks for listening. Don’t forget to like and subscribe this podcast and we will talk to you next time. 

Conclusion with music: 36:51

Thanks for joining me and tuning into this episode of Lake Simcoe sessions. Let us know what you think by using the hashtag climate connection on social media or tagging us at LSRCA on Twitter. Make sure to like and subscribe the podcast or visit our website at LSRCA to see all of our podcast episodes. LSRCA is committed to providing an accessible experience for all so transcripts of each podcast episode will be posted on our website. Special thanks to the RBC Foundation whose financial support has helped to make this podcast possible.

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