Both the federal and Ontario governments have pledged to fund a disaster mitigation initiative along Lake Huron and the St. Clair River.
The project involves rehabilitating five structural and natural assets. In the past few years, issues such as high water levels, winds, ice jams and significant rain have led to shoreline failures, ultimately endangering both local properties and infrastructure.
A release from Infrastructure Canada noted that the federal government is investing $8 million through the Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund, while the St. Clair Region Conservation Authority is contributing $12.3 million.
Once the project is completed, it will protect critical infrastructure, improve the safety of some 50,000 residents along the waterfront, and reduce the number of people affected and local economic losses by about 80%. Infrastructure Canada also said that the project is estimated to generate $7.5 in long-term savings on recovery and replacement costs for every $1 invested.
“By investing in this important disaster mitigation project, we are helping better protect residents of Sarnia and St. Clair against flooding and shoreline erosion while also greatly reducing the costs of recovery following extreme weather incidents,” said Kate Young, Member of Parliament for London West and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Science and Sport and to the Minister of Public Services and Procurement and Accessibility.
“Extreme weather is becoming more severe, more frequent, more damaging and more expensive because of climate change,” stated Minister of Public Safety Ralph Goodale. “By investing in the infrastructure that protects our neighbourhoods, businesses, and families, we are building communities that can withstand future natural disasters and thrive for generations to come.”