KELOWNA, BC, March 15, 2019 /CNW/ - Now more than ever, communities need help adapting to the frequent and intensifying weather events caused by climate change. Reducing the impact of natural disasters such as flooding and wildfires is critical to keeping Canadian families safe, protecting local businesses and supporting a strong economy and the middle class.
The Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, on behalf of the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, joined by Stephen Fuhr, Member of Parliament for Kelowna-Lake Country, and His Worship, Colin Basran, Mayor of the City of Kelowna, today announced funding for the Mill Creek Flood Protection project.
The flooding of Mill Creek in 2017 and 2018 resulted in record breaking stream overflows that impacted residents, parks, trails and roads. Kelowna residents faced extensive property damage in nearby subdivisions, interrupted access to public services and businesses, and impacted the Kelowna International Airport.
The Mill Creek Flood Protection project will work to increase creek capacity through rehabilitating creek riverbanks, integrating increased drainage solutions, and adding new off-stream water storage areas. The increased creek capacity will not only significantly enhance the city's ability to regulate water levels, and protect homes and businesses from future flooding, but will also improve fish spawning areas and protect local wildlife and ecosystems.
The Government of Canada is contributing $22 million to this project through the Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund.
"Taking concrete steps to adapt to the impacts of climate change is essential to ensuring a safe prosperous future for our families, our communities and the environment. The Mill Creek Flood Protection project will better protect residents and businesses of Kelowna from future flooding events, and economic loss due to extreme weather. By investing in infrastructure that protects communities now, we are ensuring that Canadians can thrive and prosper for generations to come."
The Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, on behalf of the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities
"In recent years, too many people have had to endure and recover from damage to their property as a result of climate change and extreme weather. Those situations are dangerous in the moment, and the recovery is stressful and costly. Building infrastructure like this to better manage water is a reassuring step for people in Kelowna who have seen the damages up close."
Stephen Fuhr, Member of Parliament for Kelowna-Lake Country
"The City of Kelowna is pleased to receive this important federal funding to support improvements to flood protection infrastructure around the Kelowna International Airport and other flood-prone sections of Mill Creek. Our citizens have told us that we need to take action in the face of climate change, and today's funding announcement marks a significant turning point toward reducing future flood impacts to our community."
His Worship Colin Basran, Mayor, City of Kelowna
- The Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund (DMAF) is a $2-billion, 10-year program to help communities build the infrastructure they need to better withstand natural hazards such as floods, wildfires, earthquakes and droughts.
- DMAF is part of the federal government's Investing in Canada infrastructure plan, which is providing more than $180 billion over 12 years for public transit projects, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation routes, and rural and northern communities.
- Investing in green infrastructure that helps communities cope with the intensifying effects of climate change is an integral part of Canada's transition to a more resilient, low-carbon economy, which is among the commitments made under the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change.
Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund: http://www.infrastructure.gc.ca/dmaf-faac/index-eng.html
Investing in Canada: Canada's Long-Term Infrastructure Plan:
Investing in Canada plan project map: http://www.infrastructure.gc.ca/gmap-gcarte/index-eng.html
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SOURCE Infrastructure Canada