In Spring 2022, the City of Merritt’s Recovery Operations Team and consultants presented several potential flood mitigation options to Council. The preferred mitigation option was a combination of diking options, as outlined in this updated Presentation to Council (PDF). While some residents support dredging of the river, hydrologists deem that this is not a viable flood mitigation measure and can negatively impact the environment. It is important to note that the designs presented are preliminary and will be modified further after input from residents and first nations. This report was a necessary step in seeking the required $165 million flood mitigation funding from other levels of government.
On February 3, 2023, the Province of BC’s Ministry of Emergency Management and Climate Readiness announced that is was providing the City of Merritt with $2 million towards flood mitigation diking around the Public Works facility by Canford Avenue. During the 2021 flood, the City’s sewer and water management plant flooded, prompting the evacuation of the entire city. This grant is part of the $23.4 million Community Emergency Preparedness Fund (CEPF) that will help multiple BC communities to better prepare for, mitigate and respond to climate-related emergencies, such as floods and extreme temperatures.
This grant is in addition to the $329,000 for flood-hazard mapping and new flood-mitigation plans provided by the Public Safety Minister in May 2022.