How will the climate crisis alter the way we work, what careers are emerging out of the climate crisis, and how will organizations shape the future of work in all career areas and job types? Hear from our expert panellists on the future of work in relation to climate adaptation, climate-change mitigation, and net-zero initiatives.

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The Panellists

Gavin Pitchford, Executive Director, Clean50 / CEO of Delta Management Group, leads the only search firm in Canada focused on the niche market of clean, green and climate-related professionals. Gavin brings on-the-ground experience with workforce changes and green innovation portfolios, and he connects people and projects for new jobs, in cleantech, “environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG)”, and sustainability leadership.  Through his innovation accelerator, Clean50, Gavin annually brings together 120 of Canada’s leading authorities on sustainability, cleantech, and low carbon economies, creating networks amongst innovators, political and industry leaders, to help Canadians understand the urgent need for action in a climate-changed world, and advancing Canada’s prosperity in a sustainable fashion.

Ewa Jackson, Managing Director, ICLEI Canada, ICLEI Canada is involved with low carbon and resilience capacity-building in municipalities. In this webinar, Ewa will share climate-change-related workforce opportunities in municipalities, the local government structures at the front line of planning for and dealing with climate impacts (floods, sea-level rise, heat domes, etc.). As many municipalities in Canada have made a political commitment to “climate emergency measures”, policy rolls into practice and In each city and town in Canada, there are opportunities for employment and for consulting services – in adaptation and resilience planning, energy and emissions planning, and leading new governance models to address the climate emergency.

Laniel Bateman, Director for Climate Change Adaptation Policy, Environment and Climate Change Canada. Laniel grew up near Bancroft, Ontario in the Algonquin Park area where she developed her passion for nature and the environment.  She joined Environment Canada in 2003 and has worked on a broad range of files, primarily related to nature and climate change. Prior to joining the Government of Canada, she worked in the non-profit sector and in the private sector in wetland remediation work.  Laniel holds an Environmental Science degree from the University of Guelph.

Avi Lewis, documentary filmmaker, journalist, educator and aspiring politician, has a 25-year journalism career which includes directing and producing award-winning theatrically-released documentaries, The Take (2004) and This Changes Everything (2015). He has hosted and reported for TV networks worldwide including Canada’s City TV, the CBC, UK’s Channel 4 and Al Jazeera English. In 2017, he co-founded and was Strategic Director of The Leap – a grassroots climate organization launched to upend our collective response to the crises of climate, inequality and racism.  From 2018-2021 he was a lecturer in Journalism and Media Studies at Rutgers University.  In 2021’s Federal Election, Avi was the NDP candidate in the West Vancouver–Sunshine Coast–Sea-to-Sky riding. He is currently an Associate Professor in the Geography Department in the Faculty of Arts at UBC. 

Professor Carla Lipsig-Mumme, York University, is recognized for her pioneering work in the area of the green transition of work and workplaces (e.g.labour, workplaces and the impacts of climate change in workplaces). Her scholarly research is focused on both international and Canadian workers and workplaces and her projects include Work in a Warming World (SSHRC 2010-2016); Adapting Canadian Work to Climate Change.

Vivian Forssman, Moderator, is Program Manager of Adaptation Learning Network, a capacity-building initiative led by the ResiliencebyDesign Lab at Royal Roads University, funded by Natural Resources Canada and the BC Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy. Vivian’s focus is on developing upskilling opportunities for working professionals, on their role in planning for and responding to climate change impacts. Adaptation Learning network has developed the Climate Adaptation Competency Framework, and many courses offered through Canadian universities.  

After panellists have completed 5-minute Lightning Talks, webinar participants will be invited to comment and ask questions.


12noon – 12:05pm3minDr. Robin Cox, RRU Professor and Director, Adaptation Learning Network: Introduction to Future of Work series and Territorial Acknowledgement
12:05 – 12:10pm5minVivian Forssman frames workforce shifts underway due to climate change, provides an overview of the current state of climate-related jobs (2 slides on jobs that pop up via Indeed);  and welcomes the panellists. The panellists each have 5 minutes in a “Lightning Round” to state their case on workforce changes and opportunities (policy, practice, workforce realities) due to climate change.
12:10 – 12:15pm5minGavin Pitchford talks about green professional roles, with a focus on ESG, and how these roles are viewed from different perspectives by regulators, issuers and investors, corporates and consulting firms. He reports good news from the recent Clean50 Summit, which connects people and innovation work, with a strong focus on celebrating innovation in the cleantech sector. 
12:15 – 12:20pm5minEwa Jackson talks municipal government. Starting in 2019, municipalities across Canada declared climate emergencies, an action is undertaken to acknowledge the climate crisis and to commit to considering the environment in all local decision-making. Tackling climate change requires municipal actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and prepare for the impacts that climate change brings to local governments, including engineering issues related to stormwater management, zoning and building codes, plans for sea-level rise, etc. Workforce changes are underway, as municipalities “walk the talk” of the climate emergency.
12:20 – 12:25pm5minLaniel Bateman talks about public policy evolutions coming from COP26 and how Environment and Climate Change Canada will respond and accelerate climate action, with comments on what this means for jobs in adaptation, cleantech, finance, and other sectors.
12:25 – 12:30pm5minAvi Lewis summarizes and talks about the imperative to inform public policy in the creation of new jobs and new sectors that contribute to climate action. His work, with Naomi Klein and others, on the Leap Manifesto (2015 – 2021) asked, “What if taking on climate change could create a better economy and millions of jobs?” Avi will reflect on the recent federal election when he ran for a seat in Parliament, with a platform focused on advancing a vision of the world we are fighting for.
12:20 – 12:33pm3minDue to a calendar conflict, Carla Lipsig-Mumme will not be participating, but Vivian will provide a brief summary of her work, which is focused on the shifts in major Canadian industries due to climate change and the importance of transitioning workers displaced by climate change policies and issues.
12:33 – 12:53pm  20minVivian acts as moderator, asking each panellist questions and weaving themes together. Vani will watch questions and comments in the chat, and bring forward important comments that Vivian will direct to the appropriate panellist. 
12:53 – 1:00pm7minVivian wraps up the discussion, synthesizes, and thank-yous.