Mississippi River Near Record Low Water Levels

Mississippi River Near Record Low Water Levels

On a nearly 200-mile stretch of the Mississippi River (between St. Louis, Mo. and Cairo, Ill.), water levels are reaching historic lows. Shipping is only allowed to move one way during an eight hour time frame.  For the remaining 16 hours of the day, the river is being closed to traffic. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers continues to work to dredge and remove rocks from stretches of the river that threaten to damage barges and other shipping traffic.  According to the Corps, there are 29 locks and dams along the Upper Mississippi River to maintain a minimum navigation channel depth of nine feet. They have assured state officials they will release water from these dams to help maintain the minimum navigation channel depths for shipping traffic. On December 4, 2012, ARA joined a broad industry coalition in a letter to President Obama and other senior federal officials urging immediate action to maintain the necessary navigation levels for shipping traffic.  ARA would like to thank our members that have weighed in on this issue with their members of Congress and provided shipping data and updates on river conditions that we could use in discussions with federal officials.

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