POLITICS

Agriculture minister says still assessing damage caused by summer flood

10/14/2014 02:45 EDT | Updated 12/14/2014 05:59 EST
WINNIPEG - It's been three months since Manitoba called in the military to fight floodwater coming from the west but the province still doesn't know how much that flood cost.

Agriculture Minister Ron Kostyshyn (koh-STIH'-shen) says they are still assessing the damage caused to Manitoba farmers who bore the brunt of the flood.

Some have estimated the flood will end up costing Prairie farmers up to $1 billion in lost revenue.

Kostyshyn says about 405,000 hectares of land is eligible for crop insurance because of excess moisture.

But he says it will take some time to figure out exactly what toll the flood took.

Torrential rain in Saskatchewan and Manitoba at the beginning of July caused widespread, overland flooding in rural areas.

Manitoba declared a state of emergency and called in the military to help shore up flood defences as floodwater made its way from Saskatchewan. While urban centres were largely left unscathed, the floodwater turned fields into lakes.

The Saskatchewan government estimates the flood cost the province at least $150 million. Manitoba's NDP government hasn't hazarded a figure.

"I think it would only be fair to give the media a true dollar figure once we have all the assessment done, whether it's from the livestock sector or the crop side," Kostyshyn said Tuesday.