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There is No Excuse for the Flooding of the Mississippi

There is no excuse for the flooding of the Mississippi because it's completely preventable. Even worse. "As the Mississippi River reaches historic crests, the flood control system designed to protect property is instead destroying crops, homes and businesses that will cost billions of dollars and require months of recovery efforts, flood experts and conservationists say." Source: USA Today: Mississippi flood control: Major changes urged

The river bottom rises ever so slowly, every day, every month, every year, due to soil erosion upstream. This soil erosion will never stop. Some of this erosion eventually reaches the Gulf of Mexico and, due to higher soil bottoms, increases the tidal flows during Hurricanes that also cause harm to New Orleans and the Gulf Coast. Shallower water also allows the sun to heat the water faster, negatively impacting on fish and sea life.

In basic science and engineering terms, the flooding of the Mississippi is caused by decreased water volume, which is easily fixed by continuous dredging to maintain an appropriate volume, especially in the high flood zones because the river volume there is too small. We have very large dredgers today that can move river bottom soil onto barges to be off-loaded elsewhere, or near land onto barges with conveyors to make soil deposits on the shore, behind appropriate retaining walls. (River bottom is said to be very good growing soil.) High volume suction hoses and pumps could do the same.

Simply put, there is no excuse for the flooding of the Mississippi because it's completely preventable. And the cost would be less than the flood damage that is allowed to happen today.

To mitigate flooding, this might also be a good time to start major long term planning to create lakes and ponds some distance from the Mississippi to provide future fresh water needs. (If building an oil pipeline from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico is considered quite doable (Note), creating water ways for useful purposes should also be possible.)

Even better would be to reroute the Missouri River east of Kansas City, as described in this change.org petition - https://www.change.org/petitions/permanent-jobs-that-will-stay-in-america-and-more. The money saved from fixing flood destruction will pay for the project. And it would create many jobs, and solve a number of water problem in the South-West while reducing costs and damage caused by the flooding of the Mississippi.

Note: In my opinion building such a pipeline is energy policy, business, politics and engineering run amuck - totally insane. The impact on nature, water aquifers, and settled land would be and could be disastrous. It would be far better to build a small oil refinery at the Canadian border, which would also reduce the risk of a terrorist shutdown, and the subsequent lose of energy resources and rise in energy costs, if refinery needs continue to be concentrated in one location.

Where do we get the money for the dredging of the MIssissippi? Assess every landowner and homeowner in a flood zone a dredging fee of at least $1,000/year.

Diane Richardson

 
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