Mo. debate stalls environmental efforts on river

AP News
Posted: Mar 12, 2013 1:37 PM

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Federal efforts to create thousands of acres of shallow-water Missouri River habitat to help an endangered fish species have been stalled for nearly six years in the waterway's namesake state.

The issue recently came to a head when a Missouri agency refused to act on a permit request for a long-stalled project. That raises new questions about what will happen next in the effort to provide a refuge for young pallid sturgeon.

The conflict centers on where to dump dirt that's excavated as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers seeks to recreate about 20,000 acres of shallow-water habitat. So far, only 3,500 acres have been created.

Farm groups don't want the soil dumped into the river, saying they'll get the blame when it causes environmental problems. Proponents say rubbish.