Underwater and Overlooked: Crisis on the Missouri River


Put Flood Management First

Ask members in Congress to send a message to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Make flood control the top priority. Redirect funding and start rebuilding lives.

  1. Copy the letter below (highlight text, right click, select copy).
  2. Click on the name of your elected officials.
  3. Paste the letter into your elected officials’ form (right click, select paste). Be sure to customize your comments for greater impact and add your name to the closing.

Senator Claire McCaskill
Senator Roy Blunt
Representative William Lacy Clay
Representative Todd Akin
Representative Russ Carnahan
Representative Vicky Hartzler
Representative Emanuel Cleaver
Representative Sam Graves
Representative Billy Long
Representative Jo Ann Emerson
Representative Blaine Luetkemeyer

Locate your representatives in Congress

To Whom It May Concern:

In a year when the average rainfall in Missouri was below normal, citizens along portions of the Missouri River were underwater for months. Families lost homes, businesses, farms and livelihoods. Unfortunately, many farmers along the Missouri River have experienced flooding for three of the past four years. Something needs to change. Flood control has to be the number one priority with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and funded appropriately.

The Missouri River Reservoir System was originally authorized to reduce flood risk. Currently it operates under eight competing uses: flood control, navigation, irrigation, water supply, recreation, hydropower, water quality as well as fish and wildlife habitat. While there is a place for each of these uses, it is time to reaffirm flood control is the number one purpose of this system.

The United States is still in a La Niña cycle, meaning it is highly likely precipitation will once again be higher than average in the Upper Missouri River Basin. Yet the Corps continually states the likeliness of a flood similar to the magnitude of the 2011 flood reoccurring is slim. This is a risk we cannot take. The Corps needs to allocate dollars to repair levees and lower pool levels to allow for flexibility of the system in 2012. Citizens living and working along the Missouri River cannot withstand another disaster of this proportion.

While no one can predict the future, the Corps needs to do a better job of utilizing their expertise and resources to better manage the Missouri River Reservoir System. Flood management must be the top priority. Redirect funding and start rebuilding livelihoods.