To help reduce flood risk, the Province is providing the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen (RDOS) with $100,000 to create an updated flood risk and hazard assessment.
The Province is funding flood-mitigation planning projects in several communities affected by November 2021 flooding to help them prepare for freshet 2022 and increase long-term resilience. Flooding in spring or early summer caused by heavy rain or melting snow is known as freshet.
“The Province is always there to support communities in their recovery after disasters and to help them build back better and more resilient to climate change. We know that a changing climate means more intense and frequent disasters, and it is crucial that communities across the province prepare and adapt,” said Jennifer Rice, Parliamentary Secretary for Emergency Preparedness. “With this funding, we’re supporting communities in planning ahead with the aim of preventing flooding when possible and minimizing the effects on our communities and people in B.C.”
The November 2021 flooding caused significant changes to the Tulameen and Similkameen rivers within the RDOS. The funding will allow the RDOS and communities within the region to understand the updated flood hazards and flood risks from the rivers. The flood risk and hazard assessment is expected to help communities create updated flood-mitigation plans. Work will begin immediately.
“The communities affected by last year’s floods have been working hard to build back better,” said Roly Russell, MLA for Boundary-Similkameen. “As extreme and unpredictable weather becomes more frequent, we need to do what we can to keep people and things we care about safe. I’m happy to see these communities receiving this funding so they can plan for future risk reduction, all the while using creative solutions to rebuild. Our government is working on changes so that we’re better prepared to respond to and recover from natural disasters with our local government partners going forward.”
The flood risk and hazard assessment may also be used to support applications for additional provincial or federal funding streams for disaster mitigation and climate adaptation.
Funding is provided from Emergency Management BC’s disaster-mitigation budget.