New plan for managing the Mississippi River sand

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, has just announced that new dredged material management plan and Environmental Assessment for the Mississippi River’s Lower Pool 4 is now open for public comments.

The draft plan, which was released yesterday, describes what USACE proposes to do with the dredged material, or river sand, once it’s removed from the Mississippi River navigation channel near Wabasha, Minnesota.

If approved, the new plan would ensure Corps officials can economically manage dredged river sand for at least the next 20 years, while remaining protective of the environment.

The updated plan is the culmination of extensive collaboration with the city of Wabasha to develop shared solutions for managing the river sand within the community.

“The working relationship between the city and the Corps has unlocked an innovative approach for keeping vital commercial navigation traffic flowing on the Mississippi and empowers the city to help manage river sand in ways that benefit the community,” said Col. Karl Jansen, St. Paul District commander.

The updated management plan includes a win-win option referred to as a river sand partnership agreement, also known as a Section 217 agreement. The agreement, while non-binding, allows the Corps of Engineers to partner with the city of Wabasha to help manage the river sand.

A public meeting to discuss the new plan and to receive public comments is scheduled for 7 p.m., April 13, at the Wabasha-Kellogg High School, 2113 Hiawatha Drive E., Wabasha, MN.

Photo: USACE