The city of Montreal announced Wednesday that the bill for damages and emergency services due to spring floods in 2019 totalled $17 million — nearly double the cost of the 2017 floods.
Mayor Valérie Plante is calling on the province to help cover the costs.
“There is a big bill this year,” Plante says. “We will be talking to Quebec about that specific bill, but ultimately what I’m interested in is how we can make our territory more resilient.”
Plante wants to ensure that the city’s floodplains are more equipped to deal with future events. She says the city was more prepared in 2019 and as a result, the number of the victims impacted was only a 10th of the 2017 total.
Communities on the Island of Montreal are still feeling the effects of the 2019 flooding as they try to cover the cost of the damage and pay for measures to prevent future damage. While residents continue to recover, the price tag for the city has ballooned.
In December 2019, only 50 per cent of the residents affected by the 2019 Quebec spring floods had received their full compensation from the government, according to a report from the Quebec Ministry of Public Security.
The city is taking steps to prevent future flooding and reduce damages by installing backflow prevention devices in high-risk areas.
“What I want is to make sure that our territory, the shores, are better equipped, better done in a way that there will be less damage,” says Plante.
With climate change and changing flood patterns, the city says it must prepare for the eventuality that there will be more floods, more frequently, so it’s calling on Quebec to help Montreal be more equipped.
-With files from Global News’ Alessia Simona Maratta