VICTORIA, BC, Aug 5, 2022 /CNW/ – Today, the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities, and the Honourable Mike Farnworth, British Columbia’s Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General, announced more than $29.5 million in joint funding to reduce and mitigate the risk of floods and slide events in 11 communities across B.C. These projects are in addition to 18 other disaster mitigation-related projects that were announced last summer.
Among the works announced today, the second phase of the East Kootenay-Cold Spring Creek debris flood mitigation project in the Regional District of East Kootenay will continue efforts to increase water deflection and storage capacity to protect homes, businesses, and utilities from debris flow during floods. Residences in the Town of Port McNeill, an area prone to slides, will benefit from a significant increase in flood protection through the redirection of flow and stabilization of existing natural infrastructure to absorb water and buffer overflow. In Fernie, the Annex Dike Upgrades project will reconstruct approximately 1,800 metres of dike to improve erosion protection and will significantly reduce the likelihood of flood hazards to the Annex neighbourhood, including risk to critical municipal infrastructure.
Funding for flooding-prevention measures will also be provided to Peters First Nation, Regional District of Fraser Fort George, City of Trail, Town of Golden, the Village of Canal Flats, Regional District of Central Kootenay, the City of Greenwood, and K’ómoks First Nation.
The Government of Canada is investing more than $24.6 million in these 11 projects. The Government of British Columbia is contributing $4.8 million.
“Improvements to natural infrastructure and effective flood prevention measures help protect people, property, and livelihoods. The projects announced today will create jobs, improve critical infrastructure across B.C., and help communities withstand natural disasters. We will continue to work closely with our Indigenous, provincial, and municipal partners to adapt to climate change and build resilient communities.”
—The Honourable Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities
One of the things we’ve been learning coming out of 2021 and seeing the unprecedented damage caused by the recent flooding and mudslides is that we need to increase the resilience of at-risk communities. Funding these infrastructure projects advances our work to prepare and adapt to climate change, and better protect homes, property, businesses, and infrastructure from flooding in the future.”
—The Honourable Mike Farnworth, British Columbia’s Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General
“I want to extend my sincere appreciation to the Province of BC and Government of Canada for investing in this critical infrastructure. Given the magnitude of the hazard and the risk to life and property, phase 2 of the Cold Spring Creek Debris Flow Mitigation Project is a high priority for our region. This funding makes it possible for us to move forward with the project and reduce the risk to the community of Fairmont Hot Springs.”
— Susan Clovechok, Electoral Area F director, Regional District of East Kootenay
“The Town of Port McNeill has been subject to debris flow for several years, with the limited ability for us to facilitate the mitigation of these events. Receiving funding for this project allows us, as a community, to finally rest easy, knowing that the residents of Port McNeill are safer, but to now also focus our attention to the growth and development of our community as a whole.”
—Pete Nelson-Smith, chief administrative officer, Town of Port McNeil
The Government of Canada’s funding comes from the COVID-19 Resilience stream of the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program.
Federal funding is conditional on meeting all requirements related to consultation with Indigenous groups.
Through the Investing in Canada infrastructure plan, the federal government is investing more than $180 billion over 12 years in public transit projects, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation routes, and Canada’s rural and northern communities.
Over the last six years, 40 disaster mitigation projects have been approved in B.C., including the 11 announced today, for a total federal contribution of more than $275.4 million.
During that period, over $38 billion has been earmarked for communities across Canada to support world-class, modern public infrastructure, including over $4.9 billion for disaster mitigation projects.
Infrastructure Canada helps address complex challenges that Canadians face every day—ranging from the rapid growth of our cities, to climate change, and environmental threats to our water and land.
Federal infrastructure investments in British Columbia
COVID-19 Resilience stream—an ICIP Component of IICP
Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund
SOURCE Infrastructure Canada
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