© 2023 St. Louis Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Disagreement continues over endangered fish project

By Marshall Griffin, KWMU

Jefferson City, Mo. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Missouri Clean Water Commission remain at odds over a project designed to protect the Pallid Sturgeon.

The fish is an endangered species that lives in the Missouri River, and the Corps had been working on habitat projects for the Sturgeon near Boonville.

But the work includes plans to dump millions of tons of dirt into the Missouri, a moved opposed by the Clean Water Commission.

Vice Chair Kristin Perry said the soil could better benefit the state's farmlands.

"It's a resource of this state, and I want that we can keep that in Missouri for future generations," Perry said. "It takes 500 years to make one inch of topsoil, and this is all pure rich topsoil that goes 25 feet down."

Perry is also concerned that dumping over 5 million tons of soil into the Missouri River could pose a pollution risk.

But Mike George, the river recovery program manager for the Corps of Engineers, said it makes sense to return the soil to the river.

"We're not on upland sites," George said. "We're not trying to take anybody's farmland, we're putting the soil back into the river that the river put here."

The Corps and the Clean Water Commission are trying to reach an agreement on what to do with the soil.


Send questions and comments about this story to feedback@stlpublicradio.org.