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Roughlock Falls in Spearfish Canyon, South Dakota. Photo by Ken Lane.

What's Included This Week:

WRDA House Oversight Hearing

Last week, the Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment (of the House of Representatives' Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure) held a hearing, “Water Resources Development Acts: Status of Implementation and Assessing Future Needs." The hearing included a heavy focus on the spring flooding in the Midwest, as mentioned more below.

Click here to watch the hearing and read witnesses' testimony.

Learn more:

Action Request for Upper Mississippi Region Members from WPN Member American Rivers

The Great Flood of 2019 broke records and broke levees, jeopardized lives, and wreaked havoc along the Mississippi and its tributaries. As recovery continues, American Rivers is encouraging people to attend upcoming citizen sessions between now and early September on flood risk management in the Upper Mississippi River Basin. To prepare for these sessions, American Rivers is hosting a training webinar on July 24. Register today for more information about the upcoming meetings.

Major Spring Floods Impact Infrastructure, Agriculture, Wildlife, More

This spring brought record flooding to the Mississippi and Missouri River watersheds, and tropical storm Barry - after making landfall in Louisiana as a hurricane on Saturday - has brought more rainfall to the area.

In last week's oversight hearing mentioned above, Corps of Engineers officials said that it will cost $1.9 billion to repair more than 160 breached levees mainly along the Missouri River, noting that this estimate does not yet include the cost for repairs along the Mississippi River from St. Louis to New Orleans. NOAA lists both Midwest flooding in March 2019 and Southern Plains flooding in May 2019 as billion-dollar disasters, with 3 and 8 deaths associated with each disaster, respectively.

The record flooding damaged crops across major agricultural states as standing water, mud, and more rain have narrowed the window for planting. High waters have also complicated and slowed commercial traffic along the Mississippi River, including barges with crops not lost to flooding.

Downstream in the Gulf of Mexico, beaches are closed as nutrient-polluted floodwaters are feeding toxic blue-green algae following the opening of the Bonnet Carre Spillway to relieve Mississippi River flooding. Increased amounts of freshwater flowing to the Gulf are also lowering salinity levels, harming wildlife, as well as oyster, shrimp, crab, and fish industries and populations.

Learn more:

Selected Resources and News

Please email Ilana Rubin at if you'd like to share something in a future WPN Update!

Federal Agency Accountability and News

Sea-Level Rise and Flooding

Water Pollution and More

Save the Date! The Water Protection Network's 2019 Membership Meeting will be on October 29 to 30, 2019 in Washington, DC.

Public Notices, Comment Periods, and Upcoming Meetings

Please see past WPN Updates for earlier notices, and visit and federal agencies' own websites for complete listings of public notices, proposed rules, and rules. The Corps of Engineers may post additional public notices and related information not listed below on their division-level or district-level websites. Click here for a map with links to their division and district websites.

Corps of Engineers

Other Agencies
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