Extreme heat resource round-up

These resources can help handle the heat, whether you are an individual looking to support yourself, loved ones or neighbours, or a landlord looking for help in supporting residents.

Early on Monday, July 25, 2022, Environment and Climate Change Canada announced a heat warning for the Metro Vancouver area and much of BC.

While this heat wave should be nowhere near as devastating as 2021’s record-breaking heat dome, we should still take steps to ensure ourselves, our loved ones, our neighbours, and our pets are prepared. Fortunately, a number of resources have been generated as a result of last year’s heat and we’re grateful to be able to share them.

This resource roundup is focused on things landlords can do to help their tenants, as well as things neighbours can do to check in on each other. We’ve also included some general information links if you’d like to learn more.

Landlord BC recently hosted a webinar on extreme heat for rental housing providers with  Vancouver Coastal Health, offering tips on proactively assisting vulnerable tenants before and during extreme heat events. Landlords and stratas can also reference VCH and Fraser Health’s recommended actions for owners and managers here, updated June 2022.

Vancouver Coastal Health has also published a Heat Check-In Support Framework (PDF) for non-governmental organizations, to empower them to more fully support their community members through effective and safe heat check-ins. Their site is a wealth of information for individuals and organizations, including infographics and posters in multiple languages, a plain-language 5-page guide for doing in -person or remote health checks during extreme heat co-developed by the National Collaborating Centre for Environmental Health, and a specific guide by Fraser Health on the proper use of fans during extreme heat.

PreparedBC offers an easy-to-use Extreme Heat Preparedness Guide (PDF) outlining the connections between extreme heat and climate change as well as numerous steps you can take to fortify your home to stay cool.

BC Centres for Disease Control’s (BCCDC) guide on preparing for heat events includes how to understand a heat alert and the differences between a heat warning and an extreme heat emergency. 

For those looking to remain active outdoors during heat events, here are some quick tips from HealthLink BC on how to do so safely.

Vancouver resident Wendy Sarkissian shares her idea for installing “cool rooms” in multi-unit rental buildings in this interview on  CBC’s “On the Coast” with Gloria Macarenko.