funding for Water infrastructure in BC

The Agricultural Water Infrastructure Program will help the sector in adapting to climate change by providing incentives for the sector to invest in water infrastructure for adaptation.

The Agricultural Water Infrastructure (AWI) Program is a three-year, up to $20M program, with funding by the Government of BC through the Ministry of Agriculture & Food. The program is delivered by IAF. Through the program, primary and Indigenous Producers, conservation groups, water purveyors and Indigenous Communities will have access to cost-shared funding to adapt to climate change by investing in water infrastructure.

Funding Overview

Funding Stream
Allocation to Stream
Max. Amount per Project
Cost-Shared Ratio
Stream 1: Improvement, rehabilitation, expansion or new construction of water storage systems for farms (including agricultural dams).  Up to $4M $1M  50% up to $1M
Stream 2: Improvement, expansion or new construction of off-farm conveyance and water supply systems to farms.  Up to $10.5M $2M 50% up to $2M
Stream 3: Agricultural water supply assessments, engineering studies or plans.  Up to $2M $100K 75% up to $100K

Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible, applicants must be appropriately registered, licensed and/or certified to conduct business in British Columbia. Eligible applicants to the program include:

  • Incorporated and individual producers.
  • Agricultural and conservation groups.
  • Irrigation/improvement districts and local/municipal governments that supply water to agriculture.
  • Indigenous Communities and Indigenous Producers.

Eligible Activities

Stream 1

  • Rehabilitation and upgrades of agricultural (regulated and unregulated) dams and reservoirs to meet regulatory requirements
  • Improvement, expansion or new construction or new construction of dugouts and storage facilities for irrigation water and livestock watering, including rangeland
  • New construction of reservoirs and large storage facilities

Stream 2

  • Improvement, expansion, or new construction of off-farm conversion of conveyance ditches to pipelines where savings of 30% to 50% can be achieved
  • Improvement, expansion, or new construction of delivery systems to the farm gate from off-farm storage reservoirs and licensed intakes on streams
  • Extension of an existing water purveyor network to expand water supply to additional agricultural lands
  • Development of new water purveyed systems to agricultural land
  • Installation of meters where a universal agricultural water metering program is being implemented by a water purveyor

Stream 3

  • Water supply assessment or feasibility studies in key agricultural areas to determine available water supply
  • Engineering studies or plans for water purveyors to assess and determine opportunities for upgrades and expansion of existing purveyed water systems
  • Dam engineering assessments, water release plans, dam safety reviews, redetermination of consequence classification or any professional consultative services as required under the Dam Safety Regulation (DSR)
While applications will be continually received, batches of applications will be reviewed and funded based on priorities provided by the Ministry of Agriculture and Food and available funds. The review dates for each application batch for the 2023/24 fiscal year are as follows:
  • July 31, 2023
  • September 1, 2023*

*Dependent on program fund availability. Intake deadlines will be determined and posted online based on program uptake and funding remaining.

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