Saint John, New Brunswick, May 22, 2019 – 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, such as flooding, is critical to keeping Canadian families safe, protecting local businesses and supporting a strong economy and the middle class.
Marco Mendicino, Parliamentary Secretary to the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, and his Worship, Don Darling, Mayor of the City of Saint John, today announced funding for the Saint John Flood Mitigation Strategy.
The project consists of improving three critical components of infrastructure within the City, including refurbishing the sea wall, raising or replacing city pumping stations, and relocating vulnerable electrical utility infrastructure on the Saint John waterfront.
Once completed, this project will help reduce the effects of storm and flooding events in the City’s central business district, protect public utilities, and reduce the risk of contaminating ocean ecosystems.
The Government of Canada is contributing over $11.9 million towards these projects through the Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund. The City of Saint John and Saint John Energy will provide the remaining 60 per cent of project funding through long-term capital funding programs.
“Extreme weather events are becoming more and more common in Canadian towns and cities. It is time to take concrete steps to adapt to the impacts of climate change to ensure a safe, prosperous future for our families, our businesses and the environment. This project will mitigate future flood damage in Saint John, protecting Canadians, and the essential services they rely on. By investing in infrastructure that protects communities now, we are ensuring that Canadians can thrive and prosper for generations to come.”
Marco Mendicino, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities
“Extreme weather is becoming more severe, more frequent, more damaging and more expensive because of climate change. 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.”
The Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety
“As residents of a coastal community, we live on the front lines of the battle against climate change in Saint John-Rothesay. We have seen firsthand the devastating impact that unprecedented flooding can have on our community in recent years, and that’s why we know that we must do everything we can to prepare for the increasingly frequent and severe extreme weather events that accompany our changing climate. This is why I’m incredibly proud to have helped deliver this unprecedented direct federal funding to help protect Saint John’s critical infrastructure from extreme weather events; this historic federal investment in our community is key to ensuring our community’s safety and continued economic resurgence for years to come.”
Wayne Long, Member of Parliament for Saint John-Rothesay
“We have experienced firsthand the increased frequency and severity of weather events that are impacting communities across Canada. Climate-related disaster mitigation is now one of the greatest environmental challenges we all face. As a City, we are taking action to identify our vulnerabilities and work with our government partners to access funding that will enable us to keep our community safe, protect critical infrastructure, protect the environment, and provide economic growth within our community.”
Don Darling, Mayor of the City of Saint John
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.
Budget 2019, Investing in the Middle Class, is the government’s plan to create more good well-paying jobs, put homeownership within reach of more Canadians, help working people get the training they need to succeed, support seniors, and lay the foundation for national pharmacare.
With many municipalities across Canada facing serious infrastructure deficits, Budget 2019 proposes a one-time transfer of $2.2 billion through the federal Gas Tax Fund to address short-term priorities in municipalities and First Nations communities.