A top Army Corps of Engineers official says an updated forecast means it’s unlikely the lower Mississippi River will close to shipping. Army Assistant Secretary Jo-Ellen Darcy tells interested state lawmakers the agency won't scale back the amount of Missouri River water it began withholding last month from the Mississippi. Lawmakers and the barge industry had sought the extra water to prevent a shipping crisis.
But Darcy says this week’s revised river forecast partly justifies the Corps’ decision. It shows the water level not dropping as quickly as feared. And she says the Corps is expediting the removal of massive, shipping-impeding rock formations in the Mississippi south of St. Louis.