Alberta government advances $20 million to uninsurable costs related to Fort McMurray wildfire

Published: February 24, 2017

Updated: July 24, 2018

Author: Luke Jones

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The government of Alberta will advance $20 million of its Disaster Recovery Program funding to help cover the uninsurable costs from the Fort McMurray wildfire.

The announcement was made on Thursday, with the provincial government saying the funding will help cover costs such as emergency response, clean-up of damaged areas, repairs to public infrastructure, and evacuation. Alberta Municipal Affairs noted in a press release that the money is an advance on its annual Disaster Recovery Program fund.

In addition, the government says it already advanced $87.5 million in funding during 2016 to ensure the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo could keep moving forward “without having to carry a heavy financial burden.”

“It’s incredible to see the progress that’s been made in the last nine months, but recovering from one of the worst natural disasters in Canada’s history will take years, not months,” Alberta’s Minister of Municipal Affairs, Shaye Anderson, said in the release.

The Fort McMurray wildfire swept through the town in May last year. It displaced 0ver 80,000 people for over a month. It was the biggest insurance loss in Canadian history, costing the industry nearly $4 billion. However, there were also numerous costs that were not covered by insurance, and the area is still striving to recover from those losses.