Low Mississippi River Levels Now A Political Issue

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ST. LOUIS, MO (KPLR)-- The Mississippi’s low water levels are now on a political issue.

Senator Claire McCaskill is urging Governor Jay Nixon him to request an emergency declaration from President Barack Obama.

This comes after the Army Corp of Engineers reduced the flow of water from the Missouri River into the Mississippi river in South Dakota which could affect river traffic next month.

You could be affected if water levels on the Mississippi River continue to drop causing barge traffic to halt.

Water levels on the river are lower than usual because of the drought.

The Army Corps of Engineers has been preparing for a possible disaster ever since July when signs of record drought started taking shape.

The urgency of the situation prompted Senator Claire McCaskill to write a letter to Governor Nixon formally requesting an emergency declaration from President Barack Obama that would allow the corps to release enough water from the dam to sustain commercial navigation on the Mississippi River preventing a major disaster.

When water released from this dam in North Dakota is slowed the level on the Mississippi here could drop dangerously low having a devastating impact on people who work on barges up and down the river.

Illinois Senator Dick Durbin is meeting with the Army Corps of Engineers Thursday morning in Washington to discuss action to keep the Mississippi River open preventing job loss due to historically low water levels.

Barge Industry Wants Federal Action On Dropping River Levels