In today’s WFP View from the West, Scott Forbes says we need a flood commission so the province is prepared for floods in increasingly unpredictable times.
“Clearly the lake has been managed to sit in the upper reaches of the operating range: residents around Lake Manitoba who have argued that for years the lake has been too high have been correct.
The government of Manitoba needs to establish a blue ribbon Assiniboine Flood Commission that brings together stakeholders — the residents of the Assiniboine basin, farmers, ranchers and business owners — with our best hydrologists and engineers to design a comprehensive water management strategy.
We don’t need finger-pointing and political games. We do need to identify shortfalls in our current flood preparations and a logical plan to address these needs expeditiously.”
A thoughtful, articulate commentary in the Winnipeg Free Press today.
“We have settled in a rented house in town, finally feeling a sense of gratitude for what we do have, but it is tempered with the knowledge that all is not well at home. We wait. We wait for the strong and menacing fall winds and wonder if we will survive another storm. We wait for the winter and know how vulnerable our home is to vandalism. We wait for the spring breakup and wonder if the lake will be lowered by then, and if the ice storms we fear will become reality. We wait for the time we can move back home and resume a lifestyle that has worked its way deep into our hearts in a way we had never imagined. We wait.”
By LMFRC member Kevin Yuill
This is the worst environmental disaster Manitoba has ever seen. We saved most homes downstream of Portage la Prairie on the Assiniboine River including Portage, Poplar Point, Elie and Winnipeg at the expense of the many homes all around Lake Manitoba, Lake St Martin and Dauphin River.
This is the largest and longest man made disruption of lives in Manitoba history, the emotional scars won’t heal over night and there were warnings it (the water) was coming.
We need to do what is right for these people which is to put in a proper channel to funnel this water out as close to the speed that it is being diverted in or make a new channel to the Red River and avoid polluting Lake Manitoba any more.
I think about the flooding that’s taking place and I think about my grandson. We want the future generations all around the province to be treated equal and doing what is right today is a good start for our future managers.
I am not saying diverting this water was wrong. I just know that this could and will happen again someday very soon and we must prepare today. Keep politics out of the decision, just get the job done now and done right.