GATINEAU, QC, Aug. 1, 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 is critical to keeping Canadian families safe, protecting local businesses and supporting a strong economy.
Today, Steven MacKinnon, Member of Parliament for Gatineau, along with Maxime Pedneaud-Jobin, Mayor of Gatineau, announced funding for a project to make essential improvements to the stormwater and runoff management systems in the Wabassee Creek watershed.
Flooding caused by heavy rain is becoming an increasingly severe problem in Gatineau as a result of its geographical location, its sizeable watershed, and climate change. Weather phenomena in recent years have resulted in unprecedented overflows that have affected homes, businesses, parks, trails and roads. Residents have suffered significant material damages, and access to public services and businesses has been interrupted in some areas.
The project will build and rehabilitate four structural assets and three natural assets in the Wabassee Creek watershed, in the Lac-Beauchamp sector, to improve its water storage capacity. It will also develop a rainwater retention area and partially replace pipes with ditches to create additional retention areas, preventing damage to inhabited areas.
Once completed, this work will increase the community's flood resilience and better protect over 12,500 people. It will also reduce by 91% the number of residents who go without essential services during floods, reduce the local economic impact by 80% and save long-term recovery and replacement costs.
The Government of Canada is investing over $22.5 million in this project through the Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund. The City of Gatineau will contribute over $33.7 million, for a total investment of over $56.2 million by the two levels of government.
"We are proud to support this project in Gatineau, which will reduce the impact of natural disasters and increase the city's resilience to the devastating consequences of flooding caused by heavy rain. The work on the Wabassee Creek watershed will help ensure uninterrupted access to essential services, protect our families and preserve what we have built together here in Gatineau."
Steven MacKinnon, Member of Parliament for Gatineau and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Services and Procurement and Accessibility, on behalf of the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities
"The Wabassee Creek watershed covers more than 700 hectares, and over the years has undergone significant changes. The watershed's capacity is limited, and more and more, homes, businesses, parks, trails, and roads are affected when it overflows due to heavy or rapid rainfall. Today's joint funding announcement with the City of Gatineau will help improve the Wabassee Creek watershed so that it can cope with heavy rains and better protect area residents."
Maxime Pedneaud-Jobin, Mayor of Gatineau
- Federal funding for this project is conditional and construction cannot begin until Canada is satisfied that the legal duty to consult obligations are met.
- The project is subject to the by-laws of the City of Gatineau, including environmental requirements.
- 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: https://www.infrastructure.gc.ca/dmaf-faac/index-eng.html
Investing in Canada: Canada's Long-Term Infrastructure Plan:
Federal infrastructure investments in Quebec:
Investing in Canada Plan Project Map:
SOURCE Infrastructure Canada
For further information: Ann-Clara Vaillancourt, Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, Tel: 613-697-3778, Email: [email protected]; Jean Boileau, Director Communications Service - City of Gatineau, Tel: 819-595-7171, Email: [email protected]; Infrastructure Canada, Media Relations, Tel: 613-960-9251, Toll free: 1-877-250-7154, Email: [email protected]