OTTAWA, ONT. – A second wave of grants will help B.C. communities pay for water and wastewater infrastructure improvements. Municipalities and First Nations will be able to apply for a combined $150-million federal-provincial infrastructure funding.
“Improving the quality of drinking water and wastewater management is critical to maintaining the health and safety of our communities while protecting the environment,” said Selina Robinson, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, in a press release. “By investing together, our combined federal, provincial and local government funding for these projects will make a big impact on the quality of life for residents and deliver the clean water and wastewater services people need.”
Applications for the Environmental Quality grants will be accepted starting at the end of October.
“All British Columbians have the right to clean, safe drinking water and reliable, updated wastewater services,” said George Heyman, Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy, in a press release. “By providing these grants to local governments and Indigenous communities, we are investing in their future as we work together to protect and improve these vital services.”
In the past the funds have helped improve access to safe, reliable drinking water and, in some cases, resolving current drinking water advisories and reducing the likelihood of future ones. Other projects are supporting new and upgraded wastewater systems to meet regulatory standards, modernize services and support growing communities.
“This program provides a critical boost to local governments seeking to replace, upgrade or expand water and wastewater systems,” said Maja Tait, president, Union of British Columbia Municipalities, in a press release. “I am glad to see a window opening for the next round of applications and appreciate the continuing commitment by the federal and provincial governments toward the renewal of community infrastructure throughout B.C.”
B.C. will contribute up to $68 million to the second intake of the Environmental Quality program. The Government of Canada will contribute up to $82 million.