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SCABRIC conference focuses on water and climate change adaptation

The third edition of the États généraux de l’eau conference on the state of the region’s waterways presented a detailed portrait of water use issues and solutions for both the municipal and agricultural sectors.

The conference, which was organized by the Société de conservation et d’aménagement des bassins versants de la zone Châteauguay (SCABRIC), took place on Île Saint Bernard in Chateauguay on February 13.

The event brought together municipal and provincial players, representatives of community and environmental groups, and researchers to discuss agricultural and urban adaptation to water management in the context of climate change.

The theme for the event was “Water and climate change: it affects everyone.” SCABRIC director general Genevieve Audet explained in a press release that the theme evokes the urgent need to act in the face of the climate crisis, and reflects the reality that water is profoundly affected by climate change.

One room focused on the challenges of adaptation at the municipal level, while a second allowed participants to delve into issues relevant to the agricultural sector.

“A healthy soil is a resilient soil,” said Caroline Charron, a land use planning advisor with the Fédération de l’UPA de la Montérégie, during a conference on climate change in agriculture.

 

Geneviève Audet director general of the Société de conservation et daménagement des bassins versants de la zone Châteauguay SCABRIC spoke about the non profit organizations work during the third edition of the États généraux de leau conference on February 13 PHOTO Ian Ward

 

The topic of soil health was a common thread running through the day, with several speakers emphasising the importance of soil conservation works, both to ensure the health of waterways and to protect farm businesses from violent and destructive weather events that are likely to become more frequent in the coming years.

The SCABRIC reported on initiatives carried out over the past year in the Chateauguay River watershed, including the planting of 1,735 trees and the construction of nearly one hectare of extended riparian buffer strips, windbreaks for agricultural corridors, and bank stabilisation projects, all on agricultural land.

Moreover, the organization has just met its target of signed commitments from 20 agricultural producers as part of the Programme d’appui aux actions régionales (PAAR) St-Louis, which is aimed at protecting water and biodiversity.

The conference concluded with a structured networking activity designed to allow participants from different sectors to discuss and share best practices and adaptation strategies.

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