Gavins Point Dam in South Dakota releases 150,000 cubic feet per second of water June 14, 2011. Releases from the dam and others in the area were slowed to try to help with flooding of the Missouri River.
An increase in free space within reservoirs would not have made much of a difference in last year’s record flooding along the Missouri River, according to a report released today by the Army Corps of Engineers.
Jody Farhat, the Corps’ Chief Water Manager for the Missouri River, says a higher amount of free space would have only reduced last year’s flooding, not prevented it.
“Due to the tremendous volume of water, we still would have had very high record releases from the reservoirs," Farhat said. "We still would have had a significant flood event in the Missouri basin."
The federal government should pay 100 percent of the cost of flood damage in Missouri – according to some members of the Missouri Senate.
Normally, the feds pick up the tab for disaster response and later bill the affected state government 25 percent of the cost. State Senator Kurt Schaefer (R, Columbia) says Missouri should not have to pay, since the floods in the Show-Me State were the federal government’s fault.