Lake Winnipeg

Lake Winnipeg is the 11th largest fresh water lake in the world. There are numerous seasonal and permanent cottage and beach communities along the south basin and it supports a $40 million annual fishery.

The lake also serves as a reservoir for Manitoba Hydro. Manitoba Hydro has improved the lake�s outlet channel capacity by 50 per cent, building new channels and increasing the capacity of existing channels.� This increased outlet capacity results in lower lake peak elevations during wet years, and this in turn reduces flood damage to properties around the lake. For more information see

In the summer of 1974, approximately 100 km (62 miles) of dikes were built by the Manitoba government and local communities in response to the threat of high Lake Winnipeg levels. In that summer, the peak lake level reached 719.5 feet.

In 2005, in response to lake levels that were the highest since 1974, several local governments declared states of local emergency and requested help to finance the construction of dikes along Lake Winnipeg, to protect against high lake levels and windstorms. Between 2005 and 2007, the Manitoba government provided $12 million in funding to expand the municipal dike system by 50 km (31 miles), increasing the Lake Winnipeg diking system to 110 km total length.

Additional flood protection around the lake includes the Gimli diversion, which was completed in 1995. The diversion channels spring melt waters away from the Town of Gimli and the residential and industrial park in the RM of Gimli, including Loni and South Beaches.