Ag Policy Blog

Farm Bureau Asks Obama to Fix Low River Flows

Chris Clayton
By  Chris Clayton , DTN Ag Policy Editor
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The American Farm Bureau Federation weighed in Wednesday on the navigational challenges on the Mississippi River, urging President Obama to issue a presidential declaration that would allow more upstream water to be released from Missouri River dams.

Farm Bureau stated in a news release, "In a letter this week to the president and top administration officials, AFBF, and nearly 20 other national organizations, said there could be an economic catastrophe in America’s heartland as soon as mid-December if the administration does not take emergency action to ensure that water levels do not fall below the level needed to support commercial navigation.

“The Mississippi River is a critical national transportation artery, on which hundreds of millions of tons of essential commodities are shipped...,” stated the letter. “Substantial curtailment of navigation will effectively sever the country’s inland waterway superhighway, imperil the shipment of critical cargo for domestic consumption and for export, threaten manufacturing industries and power generation and risk thousands of related jobs in the Midwest.”

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The agricultural groups requested that President Obama direct the Army Corps of Engineers to immediately remove the rock pinnacles along the river and release enough water from the Missouri River reservoirs to preserve a nine-foot navigation channel on the Mississippi River.

Attached to the joint letter were letters from the governors of Missouri, Illinois and Iowa, 15 U.S. Senators, and 62 U.S. House members urging prompt federal action on Mississippi River navigation.

Stallman on Farm Bill

Farm Bureau President Bob Stallman also wrote a blog item for the Hill, a Capitol newspaper, in which Stallman cautioned that time is running short to complete the farm bill. http://thehill.com/…

I can be found on Twitter @ChrisClaytonDTN

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