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After months of requesting that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers take the lead in resolving the issues surrounding the West Lake and Bridgeton Landfills, the Environmental Protection Agency says the Corps will help construct an isolation barrier between an underground fire at the Bridgeton Landfill and radioactive materials in the adjacent West Lake Landfill.  

According to the St. Louis Post Dispatch, EPA Region 7 administrator Karl Brooks wrote to Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster on Friday saying he will keep Koster and the Missouri Department of Natural Resources closely informed about the status of the project.

Earlier this week, Koster urged the EPA to move quickly on the barrier.  The radioactive waste is a byproduct of the Manhattan Project and was dumped in North County illegally about 40 years ago.

Environmental groups and residents have been calling for the Army Corps to take over the cleanup of the Superfund site as the Corps has worked on other nuclear waste cleanup projects in the St. Louis area.

Published in Local News
   Bridgeton city officials want to transfer control of the of the West Lake Landfill and the radioactive waste buried there to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.  The Bridgeton City Council Wednesday night passed a resolution asking the Corps to take charge.  
   Proponents say some of the materials buried at West Lake came from other sites controlled by the Corps, so it makes sense for them to take over of the Bridgeton site too.
   Bridgeton homeowner Dawn Chapman agrees. She spoke with Fox 2 News about the vote. "We want the experts to come in and figure out what needs to happen to this," she said.  "We want objective, scientific results and then let's make a decision." 
   Concern continues to grow over the risks posed to the local community by a slow-smoldering fire at the adjacent Bridgeton Landfill.  EPA officials have said the fire is inching closer to West Lake.
 
Published in Local News
ST. LOUIS (AP) - Corps of Engineers officials are holding several workshops in Missouri and Illinois in the next two weeks to discuss flood preparation with local officials.
 
March is the start of the flood season along the Mississippi River Valley. The workshops are designed to give levee district officials a chance to hear about the spring flood outlook and discuss levee safety, response capabilities and other issues.
 
All four workshops start at 6:30 p.m. They are scheduled for Monday at the Lincoln County Courthouse in Troy, Mo., Thursday at Fire Engine House No. 1 in Fairview Heights, Ill., March 10 at the Jacksonville, Ill., Convention and Visitors Bureau, and March 12 at the Osage Centre in Cape Girardeau, Mo.
Published in Local News

It may not feel like it quite yet, but campers and boaters planning ahead may need to know the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is considering closing another campsite on Table Rock Lake.

 

The corps announced Monday that the Viney Creek Recreation Area near Golden, Mo. is the targeted site. Lake manager Greg Oller says federal funding for Table Rock was reduced $600,000 this year. The rec area faces a problem in that it doesn't have a commercial marina. Viney Creek does offer campsites, a playground area and swimming area.

 

Oller says boaters will have seven other nearby public areas to use to gain access to Table Rock Lake.

Published in Local News
ALTON, Ill. (AP) - Members of Illinois' congressional delegation want the Army Corps of Engineers to use some of the funding included in a spending bill to fix portions of a Mississippi River levee.
Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin, Republican Sen. Mark Kirk, and Republican congressmen Rodney Davis and John Shimkus made the request in a letter also signed by Democratic Rep. Bill Enyart.
In correspondence to Jo-Ellen Darcy, a top Army Corps official, the delegation asks that the corps make fixing the Wood River levee northeast of St. Louis near Alton a priority.
Calling the problem "critical," the lawmakers say the river barrier was negatively affected by a design deficiency in the construction of the Melvin Price Lock and Dam near Alton.
 
Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers plans a conference call next week to discuss the Missouri River after public meetings had to be cancelled.

The Army Corps cancelled five meetings in early October during the federal government shutdown. It says budget uncertainty and a long lead time required to schedule meetings prevents rescheduling them this fall.

Officials are accepting public comments on a draft operating plan for the Missouri River. Monday's conference call will include an update on current conditions in the river basin and plans for regulating reservoirs next year.

 

Published in Local News
Tuesday, 06 August 2013 17:21

Plan to close levee gap moving forward

ST. LOUIS (AP) - A long-delayed project to close a huge levee gap and improve drainage in southeast Missouri is moving forward.

The Army Corps of Engineers on Tuesday announced plans for public meetings to discuss a proposed environmental impact statement for the St. Johns Bayou and New Madrid Floodway project. Meetings will be Aug. 27 in East Prairie, Mo., and Aug. 28 in nearby Cairo, Ill.

The levee holds back the Mississippi River from agricultural land in the Missouri Bootheel region, but it has a 1,500-foot gap.

A $100 million project that also includes drainage improvements in the Missouri towns of Charleston, East Prairie and Sikeston was given the go-ahead in 2006 but halted a year later over concerns raised by environmentalists. A federal judge agreed to put the project on hold.

 

Published in Local News

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