July 12, 2014 1:00 am

Climate change may increase risk of flooding along Fraser River

Cities along the Fraser River between Mission and Hope are at risk of flooding, according to two new reports released from the provincial government.

The report indicates that all 15 dikes along the 146 kilometre stretch of the Fraser River are too low, expect for one, which is strong enough to withstand flooding.

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In response, the review suggests the development of a regional flood protection strategy involving all levels of government, and it also calls for strategic planning and upgrades to protect properties along the Fraser.

Most of the dikes were constructed in the 1970s and ’80s to meet the largest flood flow on record from 1894.

The report finds that by the end of this century, a 50-year flood may be similar in magnitude to floods that have a return period of 200 or 500 years.

According to the report, the shift has been triggered by climate change and the rise in sea level.

Kevin Washbrook from Voters Taking Action On Climate Change says climate change is no longer viewed as a future threat.

“This isn’t something that happens somewhere else or in the future” says Washbrook, “the impacts are happening right here- right now.”

© Shaw Media, 2014

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