Levee Ready Columbia is working to ensure that the levee system along the Columbia River, from Sauvie Island to the Sandy River, meets the requirements for participation in federal programs and continues to reduce the risk of flooding for important regional assets in the area. In so doing, Levee Ready Columbia will help provide a safe and stable future for the residential, commercial, industrial, ecological and recreational land-uses now present in the area.
Accreditation and Certification
Levee Ready Columbia seeks to ensure that the levees and other flood management infrastructure remain accredited by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and remain in good standing in the US Army Corps of Engineers’ (the Corps) Rehabilitation and Inspection Program (RIP).
Accreditation from FEMA is necessary to ensure that property owners have access to the discounted flood insurance provided through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). To achieve accreditation, a professional engineer must certify the levees. This means that the levees need to be inspected, tested, and studied (and potentially repaired) to ensure that they will perform well against a 1-percent-annual-chance flood event.
The levees must maintain good standing in the Corps’ RIP. The RIP is similar to an insurance program for the levees. When local agencies maintain the levees to the standards of the RIP, our local community will receive aid from the Corps during and after flood events.
Levee Ready Columbia conducting the work that will help us to better understand the current condition of the levees, the potential changes in river conditions associated with climate change, and the economic, community, and environmental assets that may be at risk.
“We all understand the damage that levees do to the environment. It’s no secret; most of us have worked on these issues. The drainage districts have a really rich history of mitigating against that. Make no mistake, the biggest value for the environment that these levees have is relieving the pressure on the urban growth boundary. Every acre that we protect behind these levees is an acre that we don’t have to develop on the perimeter of the boundary. So for that, I thank all of you for this Declaration of Cooperation.” Corky Collier, Columbia Corridor Association.