There was significant flooding and debris flow in Fairmont in June of 2020. RDEK file photo.

There was significant flooding and debris flow in Fairmont in June of 2020. RDEK file photo.

RDEK receives $420K for flood-risk mitigation project

The Regional District of East Kootenay is receiving nearly half a million dollars in disaster mitigation funding, which was directed to flood-risk prioritization.

The project, which received $420,000, provided a flood and steep creek debris flood-risk prioritization for the Columbia Basin, according to a provincial news release.

It considered future effects of climate change, and catalogued clear-water flood and debris flood hazards and elements at risk across the East Kootenay.

“Communities in flood-prone areas across the province know the importance of understanding the hazards and being prepared for flooding,” said Bowinn Ma, Minister of Emergency Management and Climate Readiness.

“By partnering with the federal government, we are maximizing funding and supporting communities in their work to become more resilient and better prepared to face damaging floods in the future.”

The East Kootenay project was one out of 24 projects identified across the province through $11 million through a disaster mitigation program that cost-shares between federal and provincial governments.

“The Government of Canada will always be there to support Canadians, especially when it comes to preparing for and recovering from extreme weather events and natural disasters,” said Bill Blair, federal Minister of Emergency Preparedness. “We also recognize that Indigenous communities are among the most at risk from the increasing disaster-related impacts of climate change, and we’ll continue to work alongside First Nations partners to address their local resiliency needs.

“These projects are focused on advanced planning and mitigation efforts to reduce the risks of flooding events, which is a crucial element of building greater disaster resilience for the future.”

Projects were identified through four funding streams that focused on risk assessments, flood mapping, mitigation planning and investing in non-structural or small-scale structural mitigation.