U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Missouri River Flooding
4:18 pm
Fri July 8, 2011

Ag secretary questions Corps on Missouri flooding

Aerial views of the Missouri River in the Bismarck-Mandan, North Dakota area June 8, 2011. The upstream Garrison Dam was releasing water into the Missouri River at a flow of 140,000 cubic feet per second.
(Via Flickr/USACEPublicAffairs/Photo by Maj. Gen. David Sprynczynatyk)

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack is taking the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to task for its handling of the Missouri River, which has flooded thousands of acres of farmland in seven states.

The Associated Press obtained a copy of a June 28 letter in which Vilsack questions the Corps' decision not to release more water from dams earlier in the spring to prevent prolonged flooding this summer. The flooding followed spring rains and the melting of a deep Rocky Mountain snowpack.

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Missouri River flooding
5:50 pm
Tue July 5, 2011

Army Corps of Engineers criticized for timing of letters to flood-besieged farmers

Water flows from the Missouri River over levee L-550, located north of Highway 136 in Atchison County, Mo., June 19.
(Via Flickr/USACEPublicAffairs/By Carlos J. Lazo)

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is catching flak for sending out letters to farmers along the flooded Missouri River.

The letters in question are an attempt to gauge farmers' interest in selling their lands to the federal government for wildlife habitat restoration.  Farmers in Missouri and Iowa have been receiving the letters.

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Birds Point water quality
2:16 pm
Tue June 28, 2011

EPA says Birds Point floodway testing shows no contamination problems

Satellite images show the Birds Point-New Madrid floodway before (bottom) and after (top) the intentional breech of the levee. EPA testing found normal contaminant levels in the floodwater.
(via Flickr/NASA Earth Observatory)

The federal Environmental Protection Association says it found no evidence of serious contamination in Mississippi River water released by the May 2 breech of the Birds Point levee in southeast Missouri.

The Army Corps of Engineers blew up the levee to relieve the flooding risk to Cairo, Ill.  In doing so, it covered 130,000 acres of Missouri farmland with several feet of water.

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Missouri River flooding
5:38 pm
Mon June 20, 2011

More water could be released from South Dakota dam into Mo. River

Brigadier Gen. John McMahon of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, at a meeting in Jefferson City.
(Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio)

Updated 8:55 with information about another levee breach:

The flooding has breached another levee in northwest Missouri, forcing the evacuation of the Holt County town of Craig.

Emergency officials in Holt County say the flooding Missouri River breached a levee along the Big Tarkio River around 2 p.m. Monday, and another nearby levee is being overtopped.

Residents of Craig have until noon to leave their homes. Emergency sandbagging operations are ongoing.

Our earlier story:

The amount of water being released from a South Dakota dam into the Missouri River could increase, if a weather system currently over the river’s upper basin dumps more rain.

That’s the warning given today by Brigadier General John McMahon of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers during a visit to Jefferson City.

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Blunt on levees
3:20 pm
Tue June 7, 2011

Blunt urges focus on infrastructure as floodwaters approach Missouri

Water surges from the open gates of the Oahe Stilling basin, located just north of Pierre, S.D. on June 5. U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt is worried about the number of levees that could be overtopped as the flood rushes downstream.
(via Flickr/U.S. Army Corps of Engineers/Carlos J. Lazo)

Mo. Republican Roy Blunt says he's carefully watching a wave of water that will make its way down the Missouri River over the next few days and is already forcing evacuations in Iowa.

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Missouri River flooding
5:27 pm
Mon June 6, 2011

Major flooding possible along Missouri River this summer

Current water elevations on the Missouri River climb near a temporary emergency levee at Fort Pierre, S.D. on June 4.
(Via Flickr/USACEPublicAffairs/By Carlos J. Lazo)

Cities and towns along the Missouri River should begin preparing for major flooding in the next few weeks, according to federal officials.

The high water levels on the Missouri in the upper Great Plains are being blamed on a near-year’s worth of rainfall in a few week’s time -- and 140 percent more snowfall in the areas of the Rocky Mountains adjacent to the Missouri River basin.

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Birds Point Levee
5:08 pm
Mon June 6, 2011

Nixon asks Army Corps to speed approval of temporary Birds Point levee

Mo. Gov. Jay Nixon.
(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

The construction plan for a temporary levee at Birds Point got a gubernatorial boost today.

Beginning on May 2, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers intentionally breached the levee at Birds Point on to relieve pressure on a strained Mississippi River system. The breech covered about 130,000 acres of Missouri farmland with water.

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Birds Point Levee
11:35 am
Wed May 25, 2011

Corps considering plan to replace levee

An aerial look at the flooding around Cairo, Ill. on April 28.
(via Butler Miller)

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is considering a plan to replace the earthen levee at the Birds Point-New Madrid Floodway with mechanical gates.

The corps intentionally breached the levee May 2 to reduce the threat of major flooding from the Mississippi and Ohio rivers in nearby Cairo, Ill. The breach flooded 130,000 acres of prime Missouri farmland and damaged or destroyed as many as 100 homes.

Corps spokesman Jim Pogue told The Southeast Missourian that the corps will "look at all the alternatives" after it temporarily repairs the levee by March 1.

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Morning round-up
9:30 am
Wed May 18, 2011

Morning headlines: Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Ann Wagner.
(via Wikimedia Commons/ United States Department of State)

Wagner Enters U.S. House Race

Former Missouri Republican Party Chairwoman Ann Wagner has announced her candidacy for a U.S. House race.  Congressman Todd Akin announced Tuesday that he will forgo re-election for his suburban St. Louis seat to instead enter the Republican primary to challenge Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill. Hours later, Wagner announced that she will run for Akin's 2nd District seat.

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Morning round-up
9:25 am
Thu May 5, 2011

Morning headlines: Thursday, May 5, 2011

Two years ago today, Sheri Coleman and her two sons were killed in their Columbia, Ill home. Today, jurors deliberate in the trial of her husband Christopher Coleman, who stands accused in their deaths.
SLPRnews

On Second Anniversary of Murders, Coleman Jury Deliberates

The jurors in the Christopher Coleman triple murder trial will begin a second day of deliberations. Coleman, a former Marine, is accused of strangling his wife and two sons in order to advance a love affair and protect his job working for Joyce Meyer Ministries.

Jurors began deliberating Wednesday, Day 8 of the trial. The defense opened their case Wednesday morning and called two witnesses: a handwriting expert and a forensic linguist.

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