Flood Mapping Community
Provinces and territories are responsible for undertaking flood mapping, and many roles related to addressing flood hazards. Some provinces undertake engineering studies and flood mapping in-house, while others contract flood mapping to private industry. Others delegate authority for flood mapping to other entities such as municipalities and/or conservation authorities. In addition, the federal government funds flood mapping activities to advance flood mapping across Canada.
Federal role in Flood Mapping
Long descriptionA timeline demonstrating the years different Flood related programs have been active with brief descriptions.
- From 1976 until 1996, the Flood Damage Reduction Program (FDRP) was in place. It was a national program that created flood maps in over 900 communities and was used to encourage the use of land use controls within these mapped areas.
- From 2016 onward, the First Nations Adapt Program (FNAP) funds adaptation activities for First Nation communities south of 60 who are greatly impacted by climate change. The program provides support for community-led, needs-based, adaptation projects like risk assessments, cost benefit analysis of adaptation options, and flood mapping.
- From 2015 until 2022, the National Disaster Mitigation Program (NDMP) was established to reduce the impacts of natural disasters on Canadians by focusing investments on significant, recurring flood risks and costs. Under NDMP, the four streams of funding included funding for the development/modernization of flood maps.
- From 2021 until 2024, the Flood Hazard Identification and Mapping Program (FHIMP) will be active. The program includes collaborating with provinces and territories to create or update flood hazard maps for areas at higher risk of flooding.
Natural Resources Canada’s role in Flood Mapping
Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) leads flood mapping initiatives and the Flood Hazard Identification and Mapping Program (FHIMP):
Contributes to the Emergency Management Strategy through activities like creating databases of existing flooding events, flood maps, and flood data
Provides real-time maps of floods and river ice break-up with critical information for emergency response
Produces geospatial data (elevation, water, buildings), science, and researches flood mapping techniques and flood risk awareness tools
Coordinates and engages with flood mapping experts to improve practices nationally
Assists in developing flood mapping standards and leads the creation of the Federal Flood Mapping Guidelines Series with the flood mapping community
Public Safety Canada’s role in Flood Mapping
Public Safety Canada (PS) provides national leadership and coordination in Emergency Management, provides Flood Ready information, and supports the FHIMP and related flood risk management policy initiatives:
Involved in emergency preparedness, mitigation, response and recovery, including providing financial assistance through Disaster Financial Assistance Arrangements
Advances work on the Emergency Management Strategy and associated initiatives such as the National Risk Profile
Leads Senior Officials Responsible for Emergency Management for strategic coordination on emergency management in Canada
Assists in the development of standards based on the Federal Flood Mapping Guidelines Series
Advances incorporation of scientific knowledge into all elements of emergency management, including climate science and risk assessments
Environment and Climate Change Canada’s role in Flood Mapping
Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) supports the FHIMP and the provinces and territories in updating existing floodplain maps and developing new maps:
Publishes real-time and historical meteorological and hydrometric data. Also publishes climate data and information
Provides guidance and best practices for hydrology, hydraulics, climate change and uncertainty, with feedback from provincial and territorial counterparts
Provides technical and scientific support in the areas of hydrology, hydraulics, climate change, and monitoring.
Contributes to the Emergency Management Strategy and National Risk Profile activities through, for example, predicting and alerting for coastal flooding
Supports development of Federal Flood Mapping Guidelines Series to help communities make their own flood maps
Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada’s and Indigenous Services Canada’s roles in Flood Mapping
Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs (CIRNAC) and Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) both dedicate funds for climate change activities in First Nations communities:
CIRNAC leads the Climate Change Preparedness in the North Program for communities to adapt to the changing climate
CIRNAC provides funding to communities for climate change adaptation projects including flood mapping under the First Nation Adapt Program
CIRNAC and ISC work with federal partners to ensure that flood mapping and related data are scientifically sound and take Indigenous realities into account
Both departments work with federal partners like NRCan to compliment program activities, including contributing to the Federal Flood Mapping Guidelines Series
ISC’s Emergency Management Assistance Program helps communities access emergency services
Provincial/Territorial roles in Flood Mapping
The Government of Canada (NRCan, ECCC, and PS) is collaborating with provinces and territories to complete flood maps for higher risk areas.
Provinces and territories are responsible for many roles related to addressing flood risk and activities. However, many delegate authority for flood mapping to other entities (such as municipalities). Please visit the following websites to learn more:
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