Wolfville dikes built up to weather climate change

The town of Wolfville is raising its dikes in the face of climate change and rising sea levels
These dikes protect Annapolis Valley farm land from the rising tides. (CBC)

The town of Wolfville is raising its dikes in the face of climate change and rising sea levels

Acadian settlers built the dikes almost 400 years ago to protect the town of Wolfville and the surrounding agricultural land from the world-famous tides that move in and out of the Minas Basin every 12 hours.

"These dikes have been here for so many years protecting some of the best agricultural land in Canada. Certainly something we don't want to lose,” said Wolfville CAO Josh Pyrcz.

Officials said in 40 years, the dikes will be too low to protect the fields.

"Right now we're raising this dike approximately two feet for a portion of what climate change impacts will be,” said Kevin Bekkers, regional co-ordinator at Department of Agriculture.

The province estimates sea levels will rise 0.6 metres by the year 2055.

The province has set aside $2 million to beef up the 241 kilometres dike system across Nova Scotia.

"So if we had a storm surge that was happening and the right tide event there would be a lot of community infrastructure and good, productive agricultural land that would be underwater,” said Bekkers.

Construction began in mid-August.

Every day, 60 truckloads of rock are dumped on the Wolfville site.  Each truckload contains about 15 metric tonnes of rock.

The province said it expects to finish with the Wolfville dikes next week.

The towns of Truro and Windsor are also considered immediate priorities.


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