Climate adaptation recognized by Engineers PEI

Joshua Collins of Engineers PEI presents Transportation, Infrastructure and Energy Minister Paula Biggar and Brian Thompson, Land and Environment Director, with an Environment Award for the Souris inter-tidal reef project.

Investing in infrastructure

Inter-tidal reefs in Souris are successfully protecting the causeway and shoreline from the effects of climate change and storm surge events.

Engineers PEI have recognized this innovative engineering project with the 2018 Environment Award. 

"The Engineers PEI Environment Award recognizes an outstanding engineering project that has had a significant positive impact on the natural environment through the application of science, technology and engineering to environmental management in PEI,” said Jim Landrigan, Executive Director / Registrar with Engineers PEI.

“Its purpose is to emphasize the application of engineering to protect and enhance the environment. We were pleased to present this award jointly to the PEI Department of Transportation, Infrastructure and Energy and Coldwater Consulting Ltd. for the Souris Beach Inter-tidal Reefs Project”.

The reefs, which were installed last winter as an experimental pilot project at a cost of $115,000, are made of Island sandstone so they blend into the natural environment.

Government worked closely with a local contractor, the town of Souris, the local watershed group - the Souris Wildlife Federation, and a specialist consultant to study sediment patterns in Colville Bay and come up with a method to reduce coastal erosion that threatens the causeway, a critical piece of infrastructure.

The reefs have two functions. They provide an obvious barrier between waves and the beach, thus dampening the effects of wave action on the beach and dunes. They also help sand build-up to add to the existing beach, causing the beach to extend offshore.  

“Our government continues to design roads, bridges and other infrastructure with the environment, watersheds, and climate change front of mind. We are protecting our communities from the effects of climate change, and often, innovative engineering projects like this one can create additional benefits to the watershed and the area as a whole.” - Transportation, Infrastructure and Energy Minister Paula Biggar

To learn more about the project, visit Souris Inter-tidal Reef Project.

Media contact:
Donna Hooper
Department of Transportation, Infrastructure and Energy

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