Regional flood and geohazard risk assessment will help reduce the impact of disasters

Nelson, BC:  The Regional District of Central Kootenay (RDCK) will be engaging in a regional flood and geohazard risk assessment project that will help mitigate the risk of flood-related disasters across the region. Funding for the project is provided by the National Disaster Mitigation Program (NDMP), which is funded by Public Safety Canada and Emergency Management BC.

“Natural disasters like floods and landslides have had devastating impacts on the people who live in communities across the region, and projects like the Flood and Geohazard Risk Review will help us mitigate those risks,” said Karen Hamling, Chair of the RDCK Board of Directors. “We welcome the opportunity to partner with the federal and provincial governments on this project.”

The Flood and Geohazard Risk Review will provide the RDCK and its project partners—including nine municipalities, a First Nations government and three provincial ministries—with a full assessment of risks involving floods and geohazards across the region. This information will provide a gap analysis, helping to identify where more information is needed and a prioritized inventory of hazards across the region.

The RDCK sought funding for this project through the NDMP in 2016. There are four funding streams under the NDMP: 1) risk assessment, 2) flood and hazard mapping, 3) mitigation planning, and 4) investments in non-structural and small scale structural mitigation projects. In April 2017, the RDCK received approval from the NDMP for the first stream of funding for $500,000. After undertaking a competitive process and reviewing several proposals, the RDCK awarded the contract to conduct the risk assessment to BGC Engineering Inc., a company that has completed similar projects for other municipalities and regions in Western Canada and the Kootenays.

“This project will directly inform policy development and decision-making, and will provide long-term risk reduction benefits through more effective land-use planning decisions,” said Stuart Horn, Chief Administrative Officer of the RDCK. “Results from the project will allow staff to systematically identify and prioritize not only clearwater flood hazard areas, but also those areas subject to highly destructive debris floods and debris flows, which have previously caused loss of life.”

The results of the risk assessment will also facilitate coordination of information across multiple levels of government, particularly where there are overlapping areas of responsibility with provincial agencies such as the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, and Emergency Management BC.

More information about the NDMP is available on the Public Safety Canada website. A full list of projects funded in British Columbia through the NDMP is available on the British Columbia government website.

Incorporated in 1965, the Regional District of Central Kootenay (RDCK) is a local government that serves 60,000 residents in 11 electoral areas and nine member municipalities. The RDCK provides more than 160 services, including community facilities, fire protection and emergency services, grants, planning and land use, regional parks, resource recovery and handling, transit, and much more. For more information about the RDCK, visit


For further information, please contact:

Sangita Sudan
General Manager of Development Services
Regional District of Central Kootenay
Tel: 250-352-8157

For media enquiries:

Maria Hypponen
Communications Coordinator
Regional District of Central Kootenay
Tel: 250-352-1531

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The content on this page was last updated March 15 2018 at 2:09 PM