YELLOWKNIFE, NT, Sept. 17, 2022 /CNW/ -Today, Michael McLeod, Member of Parliament for Northwest Territories, on behalf of the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities; the Honourable Shane Thompson, Minister of Environment and Natural Resources, Minister of Lands, and Minister of Municipal and Community Affairs; and Her Worship Rebecca Alty, President of the Northwest Territories Association of Communities and Mayor of the City of Yellowknife, announced funding totaling over $26 million for ten projects across the territory that will improve recreational infrastructure and increase protection from wildfires. Together, Canada, the Northwest Territories and First Nation communities are working to ensure health and safety of all residents, advance meaningful reconciliation, including economic reconciliation, and strengthen First Nations communities across the North.
"Through today's announcement we are helping to build strong and thriving communities across the Northwest Territories. By investing in recreational and cultural infrastructure, we are ensuring that residents have access to greater opportunities to connect and practice their traditions and cultures. And through our investment to better mitigate the effects of wildfires, we are ensuring that infrastructure—like the projects we are announcing—and residents are better protected against natural disasters," said Michael McLeod, Member of Parliament for Northwest Territories, on behalf of the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities.
"This funding contribution from the Government of Canada to improve wildfire resilience as well as invest in culture and recreation projects, represents collaboration from all levels of government as well as a shared commitment to protect and improve the quality of life for NWT residents. It represents the spirit of cooperation that is required to meet the needs of residents and strengthen communities," said the Honourable Shane Thompson, Minister of Environment and Natural Resources, Minister of Lands, and Minister of Municipal and Community Affairs.
By investing in infrastructure, the Government of Canada is growing our country's economy, increasing the resiliency of our communities, and improving the lives of Canadians.
Part of the funding announced today will allow the Northwest Territories Association of Communities, in collaboration with the Government of the Northwest Territories, to work with small and remote communities to create fire breaks and implement fire fuel reduction strategies for over 1,200 hectares of land. Once complete, this work will lessen the risk of wildland fires across the territory and will offer tens of thousands of residents improved protection from the devastating impacts of wildfires, safeguarding their homes, businesses, livelihoods and the environment.
Additional funding will support nine recreational infrastructure projects across the territory, including funding for Nahanni Butte, which will support the development of a modern stage for live performances that will be equipped with performance instruments and sound boxes for stage shows and recreational activities. Once completed, this new cultural hub will allow community members to celebrate diversity and preserve their culture.
"This announcement is such great news for NWT communities. It is such an important demonstration of how by working together we can achieve so much more. The development work done by the Forestry Division of the GNWT with community governments to produce Community Wildfire Protection Plans was the needed background work to leave us ready to complete the application and now we all move forward in partnership to see all needed Wildfire Breaks constructed and the residents and assets of the NWT protected," said Her Worship Rebecca Alty, President of the Northwest Territories Association of Communities and Mayor of the City of Yellowknife.
The Government of Canada is investing over $24.5 million in these projects.
Federal funding is conditional on fulfilling all requirements related to consultation with Indigenous groups.
The Government of Canada's funding for these projects comes from the Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund (DMAF), the Community, Culture and Recreation Infrastructure Stream (CCRIS) of the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program, and the Canada Community-Building Fund (CCBF).
Under the Investing in Canada Plan, the federal government is investing more than $180 billion over 12 years in public transit projects, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation routes, and Canada's rural and northern communities.
Over the past six years, the Government of Canada has invested more than $329 million in over 90 infrastructure projects across the Northwest Territories through the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program.
During this period, over $47.9 billion has been invested in communities across Canada to support world-class, modern public infrastructure, including over $4.8 billion for recreational, cultural, and disaster mitigation infrastructure projects.
The DMAF was launched in 2018 as a $2 billion, 10-year program to help communities build the infrastructure they need to better withstand natural hazards such as floods, wildfires, earthquakes and droughts. Budget 2021 provided the DMAF with an additional $1.375 billion over 12 years.
To date, over $2.1 billion has been announced through the DMAF for 71 infrastructure projects that will help protect communities across the country from the threats of climate change.
Infrastructure Canada helps address complex challenges that Canadians face every day—ranging from the rapid growth of our cities to climate change, and environmental threats to our water and land.
SOURCE Infrastructure Canada
View original content: http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/September2022/17/c6386.html