Rail Climate Change Adaptation Program

The Rail Climate Change Adaptation Program is not accepting any applications for funding at this time.

Canada's rail network and supply chains are facing complex risks due to climate change and extreme weather. Transport Canada's Rail Climate Change Adaptation Program (R-CCAP), a component of the Rail Safety Improvement Program, was created to help Canada's rail sector research, develop, and implement innovative technologies, tools, and approaches to address these risks.

The R-CCAP provides federal funding in the form of contributions to Class l, Class ll, or Class lll rail carriers to support projects that identify climate change risks and/or reduce the impacts of extreme weather on Canada's rail sector.

Eligible Projects

The R-CCAP funds the following project categories:

  1. Risk assessments: research and engineering studies that help railways better understand the risks and impacts of climate change on their rail network and operations.
  2. Monitoring techniques: testing, piloting, and/or implementing innovative technologies or practices to improve how you monitor climate risks (like fires, flooding, vegetation conditions, landslides) on the rail network.
  3. Mitigation measures: implementing and evaluating new designs or maintenance practices, technologies, or alternative materials to increase the resilience of Canada's rail network to climate change (like flooding, permafrost degradation, more extreme operational temperatures, and temperature variations).

Projects include research on local climate trend analysis and extreme weather event forecasting; use of remote sensing techniques to monitor water levels and flooding risks due to extreme weather events, fire risks, and/or landslide, rockfall, debris flow and sinkhole risks; developing innovative machine learning algorithms and data processing systems/techniques to analyze data from monitoring technologies; assessing culvert and bridge design standards and replacement/maintenance practices to improve drainage and account for higher flooding levels and/or risks; testing novel soil stabilization techniques; testing water level monitoring sensors; testing ties made out of recycled materials, etc.

Approved Projects

The department announced up to $5.4 million to fund 20 projects in fiscal years 2022/2023 –2023/2024 under the R-CCAP:


Project Title

Project Description

Primary Location

Federal contribution

Canadian National Railway Company

Washout Hazard Risk Assessment and Monitoring System Deployment

This project will reduce the impact of flooding on Canadian National Railway Company's rail network by creating a proactive washout (i.e., flooding) risk management system, including a site inventory process, risk management methodology, and an automated risk monitoring system.



Hudson Bay Railway Corporation / Arctic Gateway Group

Hydrology Incident Prediction and Response System

This project will use satellite and drone data to better predict and respond to rail incidents caused by water movement issues. These issues include atmospheric rivers, plugged culverts, overland flooding, and thawing snow/permafrost.



Quebec North Shore and Labrador Railway and Iron Ore Company of Canada / Rio Tinto

IOC Geohazard Management System Upgrade

This project will upgrade Iron Ore Company's existing geohazard management system for assessing and managing geohazards (e.g., landslides, rockfalls, sinking, erosion, or snow/ice conditions) and ability to analyze climate change related data sources.



Canadian National Railway Company

Climate-Induced Ground Hazard
Risk Assessment Tool

This project will develop a climate hazard (e.g., landslides, rockfalls, sinking, erosion, or snow/ice conditions) risk assessment tool for a section of track in a high-risk area prone to severe weather events that can disrupt rail service. The tool will help monitor hazards in real-time and aid in proactively identifying warning signs of a geohazard for proactive mitigation and faster response time.



Stewart Southern Railway

Engineering and Trial Placement of Recycled Materials Railway Ties

This project will design, manufacture, and implement an alternative railway tie to respond to the decreased availability of standard wood ties, the rising costs associated with acquiring new wood ties, and recycling used wood ties. The new design uses recycled plastic, will be shipped and installed at test sites, and will be monitored throughout the course of the year to examine durability and placement through four seasons to determine how the ties will perform in different climatic conditions.



Big Sky Rail / Mobilgrain

Bridge Erosion Mitigation and Monitoring

The project will use laser scanning, drone monitoring, and timber condition monitoring for monitoring the structural integrity of Big Sky Rail's bridges. These monitoring technologies will help to determine areas and rates of deterioration due to rot as a result of rising water levels, runoff, and extreme weather.



Last Mountain Railway

Bridge Erosion Mitigation and Monitoring

This project will use monitoring technologies to assess the structural integrity of Last Mountain Railway's bridges and to determine areas and rates of deterioration. Success of the proposed project will lead to technology advancements in bridge risk monitoring that could be implemented by other Canadian railways or transportation infrastructure owner/operators.



Ontario Northland Transportation Commission

Integrating satellite and instrumented hi-rail truck data into current, railway water inspection procedures to improve its effectiveness amidst changing climate conditions

This project involves using remote sensing technologies such as drones, satellite imagery, hi-rail trucks, and data analysis to monitor regional water level changes along Ontario Northland's rail right-of-ways, in order to better assess potential risks to their rail infrastructure.



Canadian Pacific Railway

Remote Sensing Integration for Geohazard Management

This project will create a data-informed risk-based remote sensing platform to monitor, assess risk, implement preventative action, and support mitigation project prioritization.



Tshiuetin Inc.

Study of Hydraulics and Hydrology of the Entire Tshiuetin Railway Network

This project will perform a flood risk evaluation of its infrastructure, and subsequently develop and implement a maintenance and infrastructure replacement plan. This will include conducting a field survey of existing culverts, and using a digital tool to identify potential improvements to culvert design and/or maintenance practices to improve drainage/water level management.



Canadian Pacific Railway

Climate Physical Risk Assessment for Canadian Pacific Rail Network

This project will undertake a pilot study, specifically to design and test a program for evaluating climate risks, using climate data and field observations across 2,700 km of Canadian Pacific Railway's rail network in British Columbia.




Canadian Pacific Railway

Development of an Effective Method to Monitor Track Buckling Risk

This project aims to develop a risk assessment methodology to evaluate the structural integrity of Canadian Pacific Railway's track, prior to and following maintenance events that disturb the track structure, such as a tie replacement.



Great Western Railway

Culvert Assessment and Replacement on Great Western Railway

This project seeks to mitigate the risks that torrential rain and flash flooding events pose to culverts along the Great Western Railway's lines in southwest Saskatchewan. The project will assess and replace high-priority culverts with newer and more effective designs.



Hudson Bay Railway /Arctic Gateway Group

An Integral Railway Infrastructure Monitoring Framework to Identify and Mitigate Climate Change Impacts on Permafrost

This project will develop and employ a Railway Infrastructure Monitoring Framework, comprised of innovative track inspection equipment and various imaging technologies, such as Ground Penetrating Radar and satellite technology to measure ballast/substructure conditions, entrapped ice water occurrences, ground movement, and water levels in proximity to rail embankments.



Red Coat Road and Rail

Culvert Assessment and Replacement on Red Coat Rail

This project will assess and replace high-priority culverts with newer and more effective designs. These culverts will be identified using visual inspections and track maintenance records. A secondary visual inspection will also be conducted after a high-precipitation event to form a proactive maintenance plan of the new culvert designs.



Northern Lights Rail

Innovative Soil Stabilization: Bridge Backwall Repair Using Polyurethane Foam on Northern Lights Rail

The proposed project will replace four damaged bridge backwalls at two different bridge sites using a combination of traditional rock, timber, geotextile, and polyurethane materials. The replaced backwalls will be monitored for erosion for a period of 8-9 months via visual inspections.



Tshiuetin Inc.

Fire Risk Research and Risk Elimination Program

This project aims to study fire risk along the length of the track in northern Québec. It involves the development of a fire risk reduction plan, a fire preparedness plan, and a protection plan to prevent fire-causing railway activities. High risk areas will see maintenance work done to reduce risks, and a training plan will be developed to reduce fire risk posed by operational activities.



Agawa Canyon Railroad /Watco

Northern Ontario Short Line Flood Monitoring Project

This project focuses on reducing risks associated with extreme weather conditions on the Agawa Canyon Railroad, by using specialized flood monitoring technologies at 10 different sites along a 392 km stretch of track. The flood monitors will provide an advance warning system for high-water events that could pose a risk to the integrity of the track bed, enabling proactive intervention.



Great Sandhills Rail

Southern Saskatchewan Climate Resiliency Project

This project will conduct geotechnical assessments, excavations, and install innovative geotextile technologies to stabilize and improve roadbed drainage along portions of track that are highly susceptible to the impacts of climate change.



Southern Railway of British Columbia

Water Level Sensor Technology for Remote Monitoring of Flood Risk on Rail Bridges in Southern British Columbia and Improving Bridge Resiliency

This project will install water level sensors along the rail line to enable remote monitoring of river water levels near rail bridges in the southern British Columbia region. Project data will provide real-time information about the status of water levels, and provide notifications when levels threaten the structural safety of bridges.



Contact us

Email: RailCCAP-PACCRFerroviaire@tc.gc.ca

ATTN: Director, Transportation and Infrastructure Programs (AHSE)
Transport Canada
Place de Ville, Tower C, 19th Floor
330 Sparks Street
Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0N5

Alternative communication methods to TC General Enquiries:

Toll-free: 1-866-995-9737
Telephone: 613-990-2309
TTY: 1-888-675-6863
Facsimile: 613-954-4731