Thread: Water security
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Old 2018-02-07, 15:02   #64
Dr Sardonicus
 
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One river to keep your eyes on is the mighty Mississippi. It has been greatly altered by works of man -- extensively dammed in the north to extend its navigability, and leveed in the south. The northern dams have succeeded in moving the "head of navigation" from Saint Louis, MO to Saint Paul, MN. But, in the process, they have sequestered huge amounts of silt that would otherwise head south. The levees keep the silt in the river's southern reaches channeled, rather than spreading out as it would do naturally. So, instead of building land in the delta, the silt is being shot out into the Gulf of Mexico.

Meanwhile, around Simmesport, LA, are the "Old River Control Structures." Their function is to prevent the Mississippi from being captured by the Atchafalaya and thereby changing course as it would do naturally, an event which would leave the current stretch of Mississippi River downstream from that point as nothing more than a tidal creek. That stretch, besides allowing New Orleans to function as a port, also contains a huge number of oil refineries and chemical plants, sometimes called the "American Ruhr."

Last fiddled with by Dr Sardonicus on 2018-02-07 at 15:03 Reason: Fixing typos
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