Thursday, April 28, 2011

McCaskill asks President for alternatives to breaching Birds Point

The flooding along the Mississippi and Ohio rivers has placed the Army Corps of Engineers in difficult situation: the Corps is weighing a decision to flood thousands of acres of farmland, or try to save homes.

The Army Corps says it’s going to wait until the weekend before deciding whether or not to intentionally blow up a levee and flood some 130,000 acres of Missouri Farmland.

A law enacted in 1928 allows the Army Corps to blow up the levee at Birds Point to reduce flood risk for the nearby town Cairo, Illinois.

The plan has raised the ire of folks on the Missouri-side of the river.

Senator Clair McCaskill has sent a letter to the President asking for alternative measures, while also acknowledging that decision is difficult.

“The Army Corps of Engineers has a very difficult choice here and while we certainly prefer and are asking them not to blow the levee…ultimately they have got to make a very difficult calculation,” McCaskill said.

Cairo Mayor Judson Childs says people's lives should be considered ahead of farmland.

Adam Allington, St. Louis Public Radio


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