Building resilient communities in the North and mitigating impacts of climate change
March 05, 2020 — Iqaluit, Nunavut — Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada
For years, Indigenous and Northern communities have increasingly experienced the impacts of climate change. From vanishing sea ice to eroding coastlines to melting permafrost, Canada's North is rapidly changing. The Government of Canada is committed to assisting communities adapt to, prepare for, and mitigate impacts of climate change.
The Government of Canada is committed to ensuring the health and safety of Nunavummiut by supporting efforts to manage and reduce the impacts of climate change. Iqaluit, Nunavut is among the communities on the front line of change. Important efforts are underway to measure the impacts of climate change and find solutions that improve access to reliable drinking water and important community infrastructure.
Today, the Minister of Northern Affairs, the Honourable Daniel Vandal, met with the City of Iqaluit officials and councillors to hear about this critical work taking place. Among projects funded was the Lake Geraldine water reservoir, which has been impacted by a growing population, decreased levels of precipitation, and increased loss of water distribution because of aging infrastructure and permafrost degradation.
Minister Vandal also learned about ongoing infrastructure updates aimed at adapting the City of Iqaluit drainage system to the impacts of climate change, which includes work being done to mitigate the effects of flooding and permafrost degradation around infrastructure. Minister Vandal also visited a housing complex, built by Nunavut Housing Corporation. Thanks to funding from Canada's Climate Change Preparedness in the North Program, a permafrost investigation was completed on a second location identified for two additional buildings of 11-units each to be constructed later this year. The permafrost study will help ensure that the design of the building's foundation is more climate resilient.
To date, Canada's Climate Change Preparedness in the North Program (CCPN) has provided over $1.4 million dollars to study ways of creating a more reliable water supply, drainage system and resilient community infrastructure that can withstand the impacts of climate change in Iqaluit and to support climate resilient housing in Nunavut in general.
"During each visit, with every conversation, I am gaining a clearer understanding of the challenges facing northern communities. I have seen the resilience and determination of the residents and their municipal, territorial and industry leaders. They are working hard to find ways of managing and reducing the impacts of climate change. The Government of Canada remains committed to support efforts which are important priorities to the residents of Iqaluit and all Canadians."
The Honourable Daniel Vandal, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Northern Affairs
2017-2019 CCPN funded City of Iqaluit $90,834 to develop a Drinking Water Management Strategy.
2017-2019 CCPN funded City of Iqaluit $159,344 to develop a Master Drainage Plan.
2018-2020 CCPN is supporting the City of Iqaluit with $479,734 to implement measures to address the community's reservoir water crisis.
2019-2021 CCPN is supporting the City of Iqaluit with $105,000 for a drainage improvement project.
2017-2019 CCPN supported the Nunavut Housing Corporation with $566,024 to conduct ground and soil evaluations for a housing project.
For more information, media may contact:
Office of the Honourable Daniel Vandal
Minister of Northern Affairs
Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada
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