Skip to comments.Time to Move the Mississippi, Experts Say
Posted on 09/19/2006 10:55:32 PM PDT by neverdem
Scientists have long said the only way to restore Louisianas vanishing wetlands is to undo the elaborate levee system that controls the Mississippi River, not with the small projects that have been tried here and there, but with a massive diversion that would send the muddy river flooding wholesale into the states sediment-starved marshes.
And most of them have long dismissed the idea as impractical, unaffordable and lethal to the regions economy. Now, they are reconsidering. In fact, when a group of researchers convened last April to consider the fate of the Louisiana coast, their recommendation was unanimous: divert the river.
Far from rejecting the idea, state officials have embraced it, motivated not just by the lessons of Hurricane Katrina but also by growing fears that global climate change will bring rising seas, accelerating land loss and worse weather.
A major diversion in the lower part of the river is something that needs to be done, said James R. Hanchey, deputy secretary of the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources. He said the state was convening a planning meeting on the idea this fall. The diversion would be well downstream of New Orleans, in the bird-foot delta at the rivers mouth. Even so, there would be tremendous engineering challenges, particularly in finding a new way for freighters to make their way into the Mississippis shipping channel, said Mr. Hanchey, who took his job after retiring as director of engineering and technical services for the Mississippi Valley division of the Army Corps of Engineers. But he added, I think its within the realm of possibility.
Ellis J. Clairain Jr., interim director of the Louisiana Coastal Area science and technology program for the Army Corps, called the idea a possible alternative.
And Virginia R. Burkett, coordinator of global-change science for the United States...
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
FReepmail me if you want on or off my health and science ping list.
Can we move it so it floods Barbra Streisand's yard?
Babs lives in Malibu, so our best hope is global warming/sea level rise. That's why I always leave my Lincoln Navigator idling overnight.
Man usually finds a way to mess up what nature has taken ages to construct.. that is one hellacious pile of sediment per year, btw
just so the "experts" account for minimizing the likelihood of unintended consequences
Babs couldn't keep the photo of her cliff top/edge pad offline. We'd have to melt the whole Antarctic ice cape to flood it. It's more realistic to hope for a quake/tsunami combo to dump her in the brink.
Babs lives in Malibu, so our best hope is global warming/sea level rise. That's why I always leave my Lincoln Navigator idling overnight "
You're naughty! Of course, for the last five years I have been deliberately and ceremoniously throwing aluminum cans into the garbage instead of recycling, in order to piss off liberals. Didn't you know that recycling is one of the left's Ten Commmandments?
Of course, if we don't do anything to make this happen, nature will take its course (literally) and do it all in an uncontrolled fashion. That is, we don't have to move the Mississippi--we just have to stop preventing it from moving, and it will do it how it wants (so to speak :-)!
The Islamofascists thank you.
Civil Engineers ping.
What a maroon!
Paging General U. S. Grant, please pick up the white courtesy phone.
Actually, the swamps etc. act as a buffer and help minimize flooding. Training the mississippi between manmade barriers only raises the potential for worse flooding in bigger storm events.
You're not much given to thinking over the long-term, are you?
Unintended consequences! When you screw with the Mississippi that is exactly what you're going to get. I will bet that left to its own it wouldn't be long before New Orleans and the Mississippi river were not mentioned in the same sentence.
Crikeys!! It appears that we haven't learned a whole heck of a lot about monkeying with Nature. In FloriDUH, they re-directed a river (don't recall which one) and it caused them no end of trouble. Eventually, they just let it return to its natural bed and the problems went away.
The Mississloppi River has been no end of problems since it was re-directed. The levee system has been expensive to maintain and, after a hard rain, Nawlins pumping stations work overtime draining flooded streets. In the words of Susan Powter, "End the madness!" Let the Mississloppi return to its natural bed and just deal with it! It's what nature intended.
I thought recycling is a conservative ideal, together with frugality. The difference between libs recycling and conservitives recycling, is that conservatives do it to be frugal and conserve, while libs do it to be sanctimonious and smug.
Horse Sh**. You obviously don't know your history. The mississippi had horendous floods before the levee system was put in place, ditto California's river systems that used to flood so bad people could row a boat(cross country)between Sacramento and Stockton in the winter. Marshes and swamps are more important than people? I thought that this was a conservative forum? Where are they?
I wonder if they have considered consulting with the Netherlands, since they seem to have a pretty good handle on this sort of thing over there and they've been doing it for many years.
The places where people mostly live are above the areas they want to divert water in...and if they don't divert the water there, there will be nothing left.
It's impossible to live on a big river without there being floods. The levee system they use now just channels the floods to the spillways instead of onto people's homes, but even then, every now and then a levee will fail...
And one high water year, the old river control where the Missisippi and Atchafayala rivers touch, will give way, and a whole lot more of the Missisippi will go down the Atchafayala. And that will be a real mess.
There are places you need the flooding though. The marshes on the coast need that sediment...They will be pumping raw river water into these areas, rather than tearing down the levees, I suspect...they've done some pilot programs and it really helped the areas they did that to.
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