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City of Richmond awarded cash to further protect Mitchell Island

A city program aims to prevent the island from getting polluted from the surrounding industries
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Mitchell Island is being protected by the City of Richmond. Photo submitted

The City of Richmond has been awarded $75,000 to support its ongoing work on the Mitchell Island Environmental Stewardship Initiative.

The funding, which came from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ Green Municipal Fund, is part of an initiative which began in the spring of 2019.

The program identifies ways to protect and maintain the environment on the island, which is on the ecologically sensitive Fraser River estuary and is also one of Metro Vancouver’s major industrial hubs.

Richmond city council endorsed the Mitchell Island Stormwater Infrastructure Feasibility Study in 2020 to identify opportunities to improve the island’s stormwater system, given the risk that potential spills or accidents pose to the Fraser River ecosystem.

The main focus of the study is to develop source control and engineered solutions for managing stormwater.

The study also includes education and enforcement of businesses in the area with the goal of creating sustainable green infrastructure recommendations that improve water and air quality, flood protection, and provide habitat for local wildlife.

When completed, the city will determine the best methods to implement the recommended projects. 

“One of council’s goals is to ensure Richmond is a sustainable and environmentally conscious city,” said Mayor Malcolm Brodie.

“Because of the large number of diverse industries working on the island, it is important that we have a plan in place to protect its ecosystem and are pleased to see the Federation of Canadian Municipalities supports our vision.”

The Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ Green Municipal Fund was established to encourage environmental sustainability work in municipalities across Canada.

Over the past 20 years, the fund has supported over 1,360 local government projects that have reduced an estimated 2.7 million tonnes of greenhouse gases.