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The Mississippi River Dredging Plan: What We Know

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A few bits on the Mississippi River Dredging Plan

The Mississippi River is the second largest drainage system in North America, and it stretches from upper Wisconsin and down to the Gulf of Mexico. The river is wide and long, touching many states and rivers as it moves down the United States. On its route, the Mississippi River meets the Chippewa River in the state of Wisconsin. This area has been dredged for years in order to ensure that the navigational channel where the two rivers meet stays open and functioning. This has been done for years, and huge amounts of sand have been transported. So much, in fact, that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is running out of space.

The issue

If the channel between the Mississippi and Chippewa rivers can’t be dredged, then we run into issues. Ships navigate this channel in order to transport goods between the states, as the Mississippi River is an essential mode of transportation. Major issues with transportation could pop up if the channel ceases to exist. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has proposed a plan to purchase private land in Wisconsin where they’ll begin to deposit the sand from the channel.

This is where the second problem comes into play. The people who own the land aren’t too fond of this plan, and have been fighting against it with petitions. If this is the case, then is there anywhere else that the sand could be transposed? Is the channel going to close up, preventing ships from travelling?

What should happen?

Obviously, it seems like an issue that there is a clash between the residents and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, but there isn’t. This issue poses a clear example of how feasible it is to actually dredge, and how safe it could be if workers adhere to safety standards.

You’re probably thinking, “Wait, it can’t be safe if people are protesting!” But it really is. See, people are protesting because they want to preserve the peace and quiet in their town, and they’re worried that this project could disturb that. Luckily, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has backup plans that could sustain enough sediment for 40 years.

When altering the environment in any sort of way, including by dredging, you need to take into account how it will affect the people and wildlife that surround the specific area. If the job is going to pose a negative effect, then it should be avoided. In this case, the town near where the planners wanted to transport the sand were opposed to the plan. Luckily, because proper dredging is safe, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers had several backup plans.

As a dredging company, we try our best to maintain friendly relationships with the areas in which we operate. We prioritize safety and believe that with proper practice comes a negligible risk of destruction. If you’re in need of a dredging company or dredging equipment rental, don’t hesitate to contact U.S. Aqua Services today!