Manitoba to expand flood maps

Published: October 13, 2017

Updated: July 24, 2018

Author: Luke Jones



Manitoba will expand its flood mapping inventory by adding more important information for three priority watersheds. The provincial government, in collaboration with the federal government, announced the improvements on Thursday.

Manitoba Infrastructure Minister Ron Schuler said the expanded flood mapping inventory for watersheds would be in the Assiniboine River and Lake Manitoba basins with Doug Eyolfson, MP for Charleswood-St. James-Assiniboia-Headingley, on behalf of the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, Ralph Goodale.

Public Safety Canada says $794.520 in federal funds have been given to Manitoba over a three-year period. This was given to the province from the National Disaster Mitigation Program (NDMP) to “better plan for and prevent the acts of flooding.”

To create the new flood maps, the province will use Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) remote sensing technology. With this system, Manitoba can collect accurate continuous elevation data (topographic data) over large areas.

“Identifying the height and extent of a potential flood event is critical to support informed decisions and investments to reduce the impacts of flooding on communities,” Schuler said. “Manitoba is one of the best prepared provinces to respond to flooding and mitigate damages. The funding announced today will help expand the mapping of flood-prone areas of the province to better forecast and prepare for what nature sends our way.”

Goodale noted that “weather-related natural disasters are getting more severe, more frequent, more damaging and more expensive. This is a threat not only to the safety of our communities, but to our economic stability. The Government of Canada is determined to reduce these risks in partnership with provinces and territories. The project announced today will help the Government of Manitoba better prepare for and respond to flooding.”

The federal government is also:

  • Investing in public awareness activities and risk and resiliency tools like the Federal Flood Mapping Guidelines to help all levels of governments make informed flood mitigation decisions;
  • Has created a new $2 billion federal Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund to support the infrastructure required to deal with the effects of a changing climate; and
  • Is integrating climate resilience into the National Building Code of Canada and is conducting research to factor climate resilience into the design of buildings.