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Lower Mainland Flood Management Strategy Initiative


The Lower Mainland Flood Management Strategy (LMFMS) initiative wrapped up work in 2023. This multi-year initiative was aimed at supporting the development of a regional strategy to reduce the risks associated with Fraser River and coastal flooding and to increase the flood resilience of BC Lower Mainland communities.  A multi-governmental leadership committee oversaw Phase 2 and the final reports.


Phase 1 Highlights

Phase 1 of the Lower Mainland Flood Management Strategy (2014-2016) was completed in May 2016. The work of this phase included:

  • an analysis of Lower Mainland flood scenarios
  • a regional assessment of flood vulnerabilities and
  • a review of current flood protection works and practices

The results show that there is significant risk of a large-magnitude flood in the Lower Mainland, and that the risk is projected to worsen over the next 85 years, both in terms of flood frequency and size, because of sea level rise and other projected impacts of climate change. If a major Fraser River or coastal flood were to occur between now and 2100, it would trigger losses estimated at $20 to 30 billion, which would be the largest disaster in Canadian history.

Phase 1 shows the importance of a regional strategy and a major investment in flood risk reduction. The costs of a major flood event far outweigh the costs associated with effective flood mitigation.

The Phase 1 Summary Report is available below. Visit the FloodWise website for the Phase 1 background reports and flood scenario maps.

Phase 1 Summary Report

Phase 1 Summary Report (May, 2016)


Phase 2 Highlights

Phase 2 of the LMFMS initiative focused on more advanced and detailed technical work to increase understanding of flood hazards and risks. Phase 2 also involved efforts to advance work on a regional strategy, through the collaboration of governments and other entities with flood-related responsibilities.

Strategic Highlights

During Phase 2 of the LMFMS, a preliminary working draft of a strategy was developed, and input was invited from governments having various flood responsibilities. The process identified areas of consensus but also differences. The Pathways to Action report below sets out the background and 10 recommendations to frame the next steps, including steps to advance government-to-government collaboration on flood risk reduction.

The multi-governmental leadership committee overseeing the initiative recognized that more was needed to advance the work, including the alignment of regional or subregional flood planning in the Lower Mainland with the upcoming BC Flood Strategy. It also recognized the need to co-create flood risk reduction approaches with First Nations, especially in the context of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP).

The Province of BC will follow up to discuss the Pathways to Action report with First Nations and other orders of government. One of the early priorities for flood risk reduction recommended in the Pathways report is protecting or otherwise increasing the flood resilience of critical infrastructure and essential services in the region.

 Pathways to Action report

Pathways to Action for Flood Risk Reduction and Resilience
Summer 2023

The Pathways to Action report summarizes progress to date on key issues relevant to flood management and opportunities for all orders of governments to move forward collaboratively to reduce flood risk, increase resilience and adapt to climate change.

The Pathways to Action Report and recommendations were developed at the direction of the LMFMS Leadership Committee, with input from a multi-jurisdictional Pathways to Action Working Group and the Emergency Planning Secretariat

Technical Highlights

The following projects were completed in Phase 2:

  • Hydraulic Flood Modelling and Mapping in the Lower Mainland (2019)
  • Flood and Environment Atlas (2019)
  • Lower Mainland Flood Risk Assessment (2020)
  • FloodWise website (2020)
  • Lower Mainland Dikes: An Analysis of Freeboard and Vulnerability (2022)

The Phase 2 technical work created important resources for governments in the region. To learn more, see the Synthesis of Technical Analysis report below. Find all the Phase 2 maps and reports on the FloodWise site.

 Synthesis of Technical Analysis

Synthesis of Technical Analysis
Summer 2023

The Synthesis of Technical Analysis report summarizes the information and tools developed and shared with flood authorities and other organizations through the LMFMS initiative respecting Fraser River and coastal flood hazards and risks. The report was prepared by the Fraser Basin Council.

Related Summary Materials on Phase 2 Final Reports

  • Highlights of Pathways to Action and Synthesis of Technical Analysis reports
  • Briefing Note on Pathways to Action and Synthesis of Technical Analysis report


Visit FloodWise

FloodWise website:

For all the reports, flood maps, videos (When the Waters Rise series) and other deliverables in Phases 1 and 2 of the Lower Mainland Flood Management Strategy initiative, visit

Quick links to FloodWise

Questions? Contact , Director, Water Programs at the Fraser Basin Council.


About the Fraser Basin Council

The Fraser Basin Council (FBC) is a charitable non-profit organization that brings people together to advance sustainability in British Columbia.

Where We Work

We are grateful to live and work on the unceded ancestral territories of the Indigenous Nations of British Columbia.

Our Vision

Social well-being supported by a vibrant economy and sustained by a healthy environment.

Strategic Priorities

At the Fraser Basin Council, our strategic priorities are to take action on climate change, support healthy watersheds and water resources, and build sustainable and resilient communities.

With our partners, we work on a range of collaborative, multi-sector initiatives, such as those focused on flood management, community wildfire planning, air quality improvement, energy-efficient buildings, green transportation (including the uptake of electric vehicles and expansion of charging infrastructure), watershed planning and youth-driven climate action projects.

FBC Program Sites

Plug in BC:


ReTooling for Climate Change:

FBC Youth:

Climate Action Toolkit: 

Salmon-Safe BC

Realizing UNDRIP Initiative

Contact Us

FBC staff work from our Vancouver, Kamloops, Williams Lake and Prince George offices, and from several other locations.

To reach us, see FBC Offices and FBC Staff or contact our administration office:

Fraser Basin Council
1st Floor, 470 Granville Street
Vancouver, BC V6C 1V5

T: 604 488-5350