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MEDIA RELEASE

For Release: August 6, 1998

Governments Make Progress In Implementing Red River Flooding Recommendations

An International Joint Commission (IJC) review of the flood actions being undertaken by various jurisdictions in the Red River basin finds that governments are responding effectively to 40 recommendations made by the IJC in an interim report released in January 1998. The IJC asked the states of North Dakota and Minnesota, the Province of Manitoba and the two federal governments to report on their activities in response to the recommendations.

The different jurisdictions report action on at least 70 per cent of the recommendations. The actual response is likely higher as some activity has not been formally reported.

"We are pleased that Canadians and Americans living in the Red River basin are better prepared for future floods, but more remains to be done." said Thomas Baldini, Chairman of the IJC's U.S. Section.

"Progress to date has been both substantial and timely; we will continue to monitor governments' progress in implementing the 40 recommendations," said IJC Canadian Section Chairman Leonard Legault.

Following the 1997 spring flooding in the Red River basin, the governments of Canada and the United States asked the IJC to investigate the causes and effects of flooding in the Red River basin and to provide them with an interim report by the end of 1997. The interim report cautioned against complacency, noted that major flooding could occur at any time, and made 40 recommendations regarding flood forecasting, monitoring improvements, emergency measures and planning, environmental concerns and floodplain management including zoning, legislation and enforcement.

The International Joint Commission is a binational Canada-United States organization established by the Boundary Waters Treaty of 1909. It assists the governments in managing waters along the border for the benefit of both countries.

More information, including the progress report Government Follow-Up on IJC Interim Report Recommendations on Red River Flooding and the complete text of the interim report to the governments, may be found on the Commission's web site, www.ijc.org.

Contacts: Washington, D.C.: Frank Bevacqua 202-736-9024
Ottawa: Fabien Lengellé 613-995-0088

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