— BC Flood Strategy —

The Province of British Columbia is working on a new BC Flood Strategy to help to reduce flood risks and enhance the resilience of communities to future flood events. An Intentions Paper called From Flood Risk to Resilience was the focus of government-to-government engagements in 2022 and released for public comment. A “What We Heard” paper is expected in 2023. Follow the BC Flood Strategy to learn about next steps.

The vision, as set out in the Intentions Paper, states that “Together, we are leaders in innovative, holistic flood risk management, enhancing BC’s flood resilience for the 21st century.”

The BC Flood Strategy is intended to be a strategic framework for flood resilience in BC and therefore may provide guidance for regional and local flood plans. The strategy will address provincial commitments under the BC Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act and align with the United Nations Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction.

Four program areas and related actions are set out in the Intentions Paper. These are based on the Sendai Framework and on early consultations. Here is a summary:

Program Area 1: Understanding Flood Risks

Action 1.1: Work with other levels of government to advance flood maps to better inform flood construction levels and development decisions

Action 1.2: Conduct a province-wide flood risk assessment

Action 1.3: Strengthen dike regulatory programs

Action 1.4: Increase public and business awareness of flood risks

Action 1.5: Support applied research and training

Program Area 2: Strengthening Flood Risk Governance

Action 2.1: Improve First Nations’ involvement in flood resilience decision-making

Action 2.2: Review and modernise provincial legislation, regulations and policies to address flood risks

Action 2.3: Review and modernise provincial technical guidance

Program Area 3: Enhancing Flood Preparedness, Response and Recovery

Action 3.1: Enhance flood forecasting capabilities and early warning systems

Action 3.2: Enhance flood preparedness by developing and exercising flood emergency response plans at multiple scales

Action 3.3: Enhance emergency response activities

Action 3.4: Enhance pre-disaster recovery planning and post-disaster recovery, including “Build Back Better”

Program Area 4: Investing for Flood Resilience

Action 4.1: Enhance investments in flood avoidance

Action 4.2: Enhance investments in flood accommodation

Action 4.3: Enhance investments in flood protection