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Alberta Releases Drought Response Plan

Alberta has released their 2024 Drought Response Plan to help support Albertans through drought conditions this year. 

The plan covers everything from conservation plans and water-sharing agreements to declaring an emergency and prioritizing water for human health and safety. It is intended to help make sure that Albertans, communities, farmers, ranchers, and businesses get the support that they need.

Drought conditions can change rapidly and impact areas in very different ways. The Drought Response Plan is designed to help government, irrigators, communities, businesses, and others respond quickly and effectively to a wide range of drought conditions. The plan outlines:

  • The five stages of Alberta’s drought response.
  • The roles and responsibilities of partners, including government, to help everyone collaborate and communicate.
  • The regulatory and non-regulatory approaches and tools that may be used in various drought conditions.
  • How and when emergencies would be declared, with recognition that declaring an emergency is used as a last resort.

Alberta is currently at Stage 4 of the Drought Response Plan, and the government is now working proactively with major water users to employ all regulatory and non-regulatory tools available. This includes creating water shortage response plans, fast-tracking temporary diversion licenses to allow water to be temporarily be diverted, and the water-sharing agreements announced on April 19, along with other steps that are being implemented across southern Alberta.

While drought is a real risk, May and June often come with risk of floods. That’s why the Province has 24-hour monitoring and emergency response, as well as the new $125-million Drought and Flood Protection Program and investments in wetlands, watersheds, and modernizing Alberta’s water management system.

You can read the full release online here: 

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