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49 B.C. communities receive funds for projects to curb climate-change disasters

Almost $24 million comes from the Community Emergency Preparedness Fund
New funding will help almost 50 communities across prepare for climate-change related effects like increased flooding. (File photo by Don Bodger)

Almost 50 communities across B.C. will receive almost $24 million to prepare for potential disasters caused by climate change.

Emergency Management Minister Bowinn Ma said climate change will raise the risk of natural disasters the the funds will help 49 First Nations and municipalities invest heavily in flood mapping, adaption measures and broader emergency planning.

Additional projects have a focus on upgrading drainage pump stations, the restoration of creeks, dams and shorelines and protecting homes from flooding.

Chilliwack Mayor Ken Popove said his community saw the importance of maintaining and upgrading infrastructure like the Chilliwack Creek Drainage Pump Station, which serves over 8,400 hectares.

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“This funding from UBCM and the Ministry of Emergency Management and Climate Readiness will allow us to conduct a study that will give us a better understanding of how we can improve the drainage pump station and where to focus future upgrades,” Popove said in a news release.

Richmond Mayor Malcolm Brodie welcomed his community’s share of money.

“This $2.2 million in funding will ensure our city is even more prepared to respond in an emergency through robust mitigation planning and pump-station upgrades.”

Tla’amin First Nation Emergency Management Co-ordinator Jenny Freeman said disaster risk reduction around climate change is critical for the community located near Powell River.

The funding will help identify vulnerabilities around coastal flooding and support Tla’amin First Nation’s capacity for self-determination and effective recovery, Freeman said.

First Nations and local governments have received more than $100 million through CEPF for more than 1,100 projects. The next deadline for applications to receive provincial funding for disaster risk reduction and climate adaptation projects closes Feb. 24.


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Wolf Depner

About the Author: Wolf Depner

I joined the national team with Black Press Media in 2023 from the Peninsula News Review, where I had reported on Vancouver Island's Saanich Peninsula since 2019.
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