Strategic environmental assessment of the Operation Return Home project

The objective of the Operation Return Home project is to return evacuees from four First Nations in Manitoba located along the shores of the Fairford and Dauphin Rivers and Lake St. Martin (Lake St. Martin, Little Saskatchewan, Dauphin River and Pinaymootang) to their communities. In 2011, Manitoba experienced one of the most severe and extensive floods on record.  As of October 2016, nearly 1,900 people from these four First Nation communities remain evacuated.

Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC), in partnership with the Government of Manitoba and the leadership of the four First Nations, has initiated projects to rebuild communities. These projects include diking and flood mitigation, construction of housing, community buildings and supporting infrastructure, and environmental and drainage studies.

For more information on the status of 2011 flood recovery

As required by the Cabinet Directive on the Environmental Assessment of Policy, Plan and Program Proposals, a strategic environmental assessment (SEA) was conducted for this project in order to identify and assess the environmental effects of implementation. Overall, the SEA concluded that the positive effect of the project is construction of a safe and healthy environment for members of the affected First Nations.  Negative environmental effects will be mitigated through specifications in contracts for construction and demolition.

Below is a summary of the SEA findings:

Positive Environmental Effects:

Negative Environmental Effects:

Mitigation and Assessment

Indirect Environmental Effects

Mitigation

For more information on the SEA

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