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Barriere, Clearwater receives funding approval for floodplain mapping, flood mitigation work

The funds are intended for disaster risk reduction and climate adaptation
The BC River Forecast Centre issued a flood watch last year for the North Thompson River, including tributaries around Barriere and Clearwater. Pictured is the river at Little Fort where the reaction ferry has been removed from the river due to the rising water. (Pam Jim file photo)

Barriere and Clearwater are two of the 49 First Nations and local governments in B.C. that will receive provincial funding to help reduce risks from future disasters related to natural hazards and climate change.

Funding in the amount of $141,540 has been approved for Barriere to conduct floodplain mapping of the North Thompson River. Meanwhile, Clearwater has been approved to receive $146,120 to complete extended flood mapping and mitigation work.

A total of $23.4 million from the Community Emergency Preparedness Fund (CEPF) has been approved to support communities to better prepare for, mitigate and respond to climate-related emergencies, such as floods and extreme temperatures, noted the government in a news release on Friday, Feb. 3.

Barriere Mayor Ward Stamer said the disaster risk reduction funding is vitally important to understand the environmental hazards that could critically damage Barriere’s public and private infrastructure.

“If there is one thing we have learned from recent climate-related weather, it is that our community needs to be planning and building appropriately for these events to better equip ourselves and ultimately reduce the future costs for infrastructure and social recovery from weather-related events that seemingly are happening every year with fire, floods or heat-related events.”

The Disaster Risk Reduction - Climate Adaptation stream under the CEPF supports the Province’s Climate Preparedness and Adaptation Strategy. The CEPF is administered through the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) and funds projects that strengthen the resilience of First Nations and local governments in responding to and preparing for natural disasters and climate change.

The next intake for the Disaster Risk Reduction - Climate Adaptation stream will close on Feb. 24, 2023.

Budget 2022 provides a historic investment of $110 million toward CEPF, for a total of $189 million. Since 2017, First Nations and local governments have been approved for more than $100 million through CEPF for more than 1,100 projects that help communities mitigate and prepare for disasters and climate-related emergencies.

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