The Water Security Agency (WSA), together with Natural Resources Canada, is investing $9 million to update and expand flood maps for high-risk communities across Saskatchewan.

Both the Government of Canada and the Government of Saskatchewan are contributing $4.5 million to the Flood Hazard Identification and Mapping Program (FHIMP) until 2027-28, as part of a 50-50 cost-sharing agreement.

“It helps us identify communities that may be at risk of flood by using a number of different means,” said WSA spokesperson Sean Osmar. 

Estevan, Moose Jaw, Regina, Melfort, Tisdale, and Cumberland House are currently at various stages of the flood mapping projects. WSA will continue to work with these communities, as well as other communities that are at risk for possible flood damage.

“Some are, you know, early in the process, some are a little later on. East End is an example of one that's sort of near the end of the modelling phase. So where we're at with each community, it varies,” said Osmar. 

He added that WSA then works with the community to gather and analyze historical data as well.

“Depending on the community, depending on the risk, that can take up to a year or more to complete all of that work,” said Osmar. “Once we have that, we go back to the community, we work with them, and then those are the next steps where we help identify if there’s any need for mitigation or planning purposes for the community.”

Since floods are one of the more common natural disasters affecting Saskatchewan, taking preventative measures against flooding can save communities in the long run, explained Osmar.

WSA's research shows that every dollar invested in flood prevention saves up to $20 in flood damages for each community.