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Alberta seeks to prepare for another potential drought season

Alberta’s government is issuing a request for proposal (RFP) to enhance drought modelling and help the province prepare for 2024.

The announcement comes after the province had more than a dozen communities declare agricultural disasters this year due to the lack of moisture. Those include the County of Stettler and Kneehill County.

This year’s drought was caused by a lack of rain and early depletion of mountain snow, the province notes. It hasn’t helped that precipitation has remained below average through the fall.

The RFP is intended to allow working alongside municipalities, water users, industry and others to explore ways to maximize the province’s water supply, if needed.

“When it comes to water, we are all in this together,” says Rebecca Schulz, Minister of Environment and Protected Areas. “We cannot make it rain or snow, but we are preparing in case the province faces water shortages next year. This RFP will help complement the work my department already has underway to ensure that we make the most out of every drop in the coming months.”

Drought has severely affected Alberta two of the past three years, a release notes.

The province is currently as stage four (of five) of its water shortage management plan. Moving to stage five would mean an emergency declaration under the Water Act.

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