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Army Corps of Engineer's new Missouri River plan more conservative

November 18, 2003
By: Megan Clarke
State Capital Bureau

Army Corps of Engineer's new plan won't alter Missouri River water levels. Megan Clarke has the story.

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The Corps released a new two-part plan this week to assess biological effects and to conserve water during droughts of the Missouri River. The plan makes no changes in water flow to restore wildlife as environmentalists sought. But Corps Spokesman Paul Johnston says the plan does help develop shallow water and sandbar habitats for endangered species.

IT PROVIDES THE RIGHT CONDITIONS TO HELP THE PROTECTED BIRDS AND FISH THAT ARE LISTED UNDER THE ENDANGERED SPECIES ACT.

The Corps' plan is just the first step. Officials from the Fish and Wildlife Service will issue a biological opinion on whether the plan protects endangered species. If approved, changes are expected to start next March.

The Army Corps of Engineers is issuing a more conservative Missouri River drought conservation plan. Megan Clarke has the story.

The Corps released a softened version of the drought conservation plan this week. Corps Spokesman Paul Johnston says that the new plan doesn't automatically hold water in upstream reservoirs.

ALL OF THE CONSERVATION MEASURES LOOK AT SAVING MORE, SAVING WATER IN THE RESERVOIRS EARLIER DURING THE DROUGHT THAN OUR CURRENT PLAN.

The Corps' plan is just the first step. Officials form Fish and Wildlife Service will now issue a biological opinion on whether the plan protects endangered species. If approved, changes are expected to start next March.

U.S. Sen. Kit Bond says the new Missouri River plan is a step in the right direction. Megan Clarke explains.

The Army Corps of Engineers released a revised management plan to assess biological affects and water conservation of the Missouri River. Senator Bond, who has been a major river advocate, sees the plan as a step forward. Bond Spokewoman Shauna Stribling:

OBVISOUSLY TO ARRIVE AT A REASONABLE BALANCE, THE SENATOR EXPECTS THERE TO BE TRADE-OFFS. NOT ONE SIDE IS NOT GOING TO BE ENTIRELY SATISFIED.

The Corps' plan is just the first step. Officials from Fish and Wildlife Service will release a biological opinion on whether the plan protects endangered species. If approved, changes are expected to start next March.