IBC Applauds Alberta Government Investment in Flood Mitigation

Edmonton, AB (Aug. 22, 2019) – Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) commends the Alberta government for providing new funding to help protect communities in southern Alberta from the impacts of flooding.

The $7.6 million investment in this regional stormwater management project was made available through the Alberta Community Resilience Program, to support the Cooperative Stormwater Management Initiative and will help relieve ongoing flooding issues. The project will use new and existing infrastructure to reduce localized flooding after intense rainfall events by more effectively collecting, storing and moving stormwater throughout the region.

“Residents in southern Alberta have seen the devastating effects of flooding,” said Celyeste Power, Vice-President, Western, IBC. “As the frequency and intensity of severe weather events, such as floods, are escalating, we want to work with the government on adaptation measures like this one to better protect Albertans. IBC and its members applaud the Alberta government’s investment.”

“Last year, insured damage from severe weather across Canada reached $2 billion, the fourth-highest amount of losses on record,” continued Power. “However, unlike the 1998 Quebec ice storm, the 2013 Calgary floods or the 2016 Fort McMurray wildfire, no single event caused the high amount paid out for 2018’s losses. Instead, Canadians and their insurers experienced significant losses from a host of smaller severe weather events from coast to coast to coast.”

As the financial cost of severe weather rises, and as Canadians head to a federal election, IBC is advocating for all political parties to commit to a national action plan on flooding. The plan needs to prioritize public awareness of and education on the risk of flooding, and relocating and protecting residents at greatest risk of repeated flooding. It should also develop insurance mechanisms for those residents remaining in high-risk areas and reject building new homes on flood plains.

IBC reminds Canadians that it is not only insurers that foot the bill for severe weather damage, but also taxpayers. That’s why all stakeholders should come together to reduce the financial strain caused by flood events. For every dollar paid out in insurance claims for damaged homes and businesses, Canadian governments and their taxpayers pay out much more to recover public infrastructure damaged by severe weather.

About Insurance Bureau of Canada

Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) is the national industry association representing Canada’s private home, auto and business insurers. Its member companies make up 90% of the property and casualty (P&C) insurance market in Canada. For more than 50 years, IBC has worked with governments across the country to help make affordable home, auto and business insurance available for all Canadians. IBC supports the vision of consumers and governments trusting, valuing and supporting the private P&C insurance industry. It champions key issues and helps educate consumers on how best to protect their homes, cars, businesses and properties.

P&C insurance touches the lives of nearly every Canadian and plays a critical role in keeping businesses safe and the Canadian economy strong. It employs more than 128,000 Canadians, pays $9.4 billion in taxes and has a total premium base of $59.6 billion.

For more information, visit www.ibc.ca.

Source: Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC)

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