High Waters Offer Sediment-Laden Lessons Amidst Flooding Tragedy [VIDEO]
May 16, 2011 | Posted by Delta Dispatches in 2011 Mississippi River Flood, Army Corps of Engineers, Diversions

By Craig Guillot, National Wildlife Federation

Read this story in its entirety on NWF.org.

(NWF) – As the rising waters of the Mississippi River continue to impact communities along its banks, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and flood control managers are desperately trying to mitigate the impacts. In Louisiana, the solution has been to open spillways that relieve pressure on the levees and divert some of the river's waters to the Gulf of Mexico.

The human consequences of this flood will be catastrophic and long-lasting. Massive flooding has already hit parts of Tennessee and Mississippi and tens of thousands more homes are at risk of flooding. New Orleans is carefully monitoring the rising waters.

But experts say there's a valuable lesson to be learned in this historic event: sediment deposits from floods like these could actually help build land along Louisiana's rapidly eroding coastline. While the opening of spillways and diversions may help prevent further flooding, experts say the river could be put to even greater use to help both people and natural systems.

"Managing the Mississippi: Part 1" produced by Jared Serigné

You can continue reading this story here in the National Wildlife Federation Media Center.

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