Launch of the innovative Mud Bay Living Dyke project

The City of Surrey is leading the way in B.C. in testing an innovative, green approach to coastal flood protection known as a ‘living dyke’ with the Mud Bay Nature-based Foreshore Enhancements Project.

Photo courtesy of Mayor Locke

Surrey has partnered with the City of Delta and Semiahmoo First Nation on the project which is valued at $1.4 million and funded in part by the Province of BC and the Government of Canada through the Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund.

“By working together, we are able to explore sustainable solutions to protect our communities and vital infrastructure from the impacts of climate change while supporting our environment including the ocean and our rich coastal ecosystem,” said Mayor Brenda Locke.

“The Mud Bay Living Dyke project will serve as an example to coastal communities across the Fraser Delta and beyond as a more sustainable approach to adapting to climate change and sea level rise,” commented Semiahmoo First Nation Chief Harley Chappell.

The living dyke will be created by adding sediment and planting native salt marsh species on the foreshore. More marsh will be planted over time to help the natural marshes lining Boundary Bay adapt to sea level rise. The City will follow an adaptive management approach and monitor the site over time, making adjustments as needed.

Various stabilization techniques are being tested including sand berms, oyster shell bags, brushwood dams and rock berms to keep the vegetation in place. The results and lessons learned from the studies will be used to inform the design and construction of the full living dyke project in Surrey which will span 1 km.

Construction of the full living dyke is anticipated to take place 2025-27 provided all permits are secured on time and studies are successful.