climate change increases fraser river flood risk

Climate change could significantly increase the magnitude and frequency of large floods on the Fraser River in the densely populated Metro Vancouver and upstream Fraser Valley regions of British Columbia. That is the conclusion of a study conducted by NHC, in a joint project with the BC Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, that looked at the combined effects of sea level rise and watershed climate change. The study investigated the sensitivity of Fraser River flood levels to climate change along 170 km of the Fraser River from Hope to the river mouth in Vancouver. The modeling study used the most recent projections of future Fraser River flows from the Pacific Climate Impacts Consortium. The results can be used to develop strategies to manage future flood risk and guide floodplain development.

NHC prepared the hydrologic component of the study, and our report is included as Appendix 1 to the complete study report. This project was recently featured by CBC News, the British Columbia Newsroom, and The Vancouver Sun.