What about The Bow River?

May 9, 2014 by CRC Action Group in News

Protecting Calgary Bow River Communities

We have heard from the Government of Alberta about plans to control flows on the Elbow River but we have yet to hear any definitive plans to mitigate flows on the Bow. This is a cause of great concern for many of our members.

It has often been suggested that future flood mitigation efforts for Calgary Bow river communities, could be derived from the utilization of existing infrastructure along the Bow River System. This has been confirmed by statements from government officials.

The existing facilities along the Bow River System are owned and operated by TransAlta and were designed not only to generate electrical energy derived from falling or running water, but also help manage river flows and provide recreational use.

With the flood season beginning on May 15, it is the CRCAG’s expectation that the Government of Alberta and TransAlta will come to an arrangement with regards to operational changes that will form part of flood mitigation strategies. We are concerned we have heard nothing definitive. We are not aware of an arrangement being in place, nor imminent. It’s alarming that the Bow River continues to be exposed at this late date.

Our view is that using existing facilities along the Bow River System for flood mitigation is critical for the protection of Calgary Bow River Communities, for the downtown core, and to help manage water levels on the Elbow where the two rivers converge. With the infrastructure already in place, modifying the operations at Transalta’s facilities, in anticipation of the flood season, is a straightforward mitigation measure that should be in place well in advance of the 2014 flood season.

We are all stakeholders in how our water is managed to ensure a healthy, secure, and sustainable resource for our communities, environment and economy. For responsible management of the Bow River System, voice your support for an immediate agreement to be put into place between the Government of Alberta and TransAlta. Contact your MLA, Minister Robin Campbell, Premier Dave Hancock and TransAlta.

To find your MLA and their contact information click here.

Contact for Minister Robin Campbell (Minister of Environment and Sustainable Resource Development), west.yellowhead@assembly.ab.ca and ESRD.Minister@gov.ab.ca.

Contact for Premier Dave Hancock, edmonton.whitemud@assembly.ab.ca and online contact form for the Premier’s Office click here.

Contact for Stacey Hatcher TransAlta Manager of External Communications, Stacey_Hatcher@transalta.com and online contact form for community involvement click here.