I grew up around Gavins Point Dam stretching across the boundary of Nebraska and South Dakota. Severe flooding on the upper Missouri may be a rare event, but harsh criticism of the the US ARMY corp of engineers isn't. For decades, stakeholders up and down the river have waged a fierce struggle over how the corps has managed water releases from the great 6 Missouri River reservoirs -- struggles triggered equally by periods of low water as this year's high water.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

We're Your Government, And We're Here To Help

Hamburg, Iowa worked with the Army Corps of Engineers to build another 8 feet on their 11-foot levee. That impressive levee held back up to 17 feet of rushing water for 120 days. It cost nearly $6 million, paid for with federal emergency funds.

Hamburg wants to keep the levee. Never hurts to have some insurance, right? Plus, it's already there.
NOPE, says the federal government! The levee needs to be taken down! If you need it again, we'll build it again. And that makes sense to somebody, apparently!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Top U.S. Army Corps of Engineers personnel in charge of managing the Missouri River's dam system exchanged internal emails

BISMARCK, N.D. — Top U.S. Army Corps of Engineers personnel in charge of managing the Missouri River's dam system exchanged internal emails in late April that described the upcoming flood season as "a huge water year" and possibly "one of the wettest years on record."

But North Dakota water officials say serious concerns were not publicly conveyed until a month later, after heavy rains fell in eastern Montana, western South Dakota and northern Wyoming, and the Army Corps said it would be forced to substantially increase Missouri River dam releases to account for the rain and melting mountain snow.

Officials say by then it was too late for riverside residents to buy flood insurance, which does not take effect until 30 days after it was purchased, to cover resulting damage. The Federal Emergency Management Agency says the Missouri River flood officially began June 1, shortly after the corps began drastically increasing water flows through North Dakota's Garrison Dam, so only policies bought by May 2 would have taken effect in time.

If property owners knew what the corps knew in late April, more may have bought coverage that would have provided some compensation for their ruined properties, said North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple and Todd Sando, chief engineer for the North Dakota Water Commission.

Jody Farhat, chief of the corps' Missouri River basin water management office in Omaha, Neb., said the Army Corps is not "responsible for cluing people to" buy flood insurance.

"If people live in a flood plain — even back in February and March, we were saying it was going to be a wet year," she said. "People could have made those decisions on their own, long before then."

This year's Missouri River flooding has forced thousands to flee their homes, inundated farmland and caused millions of dollars of damage in river towns from Montana to Nebraska.

An Associated Press review of more than 8,300 pages of internal Army Corps emails and documents from Jan. 1 through June 10, obtained through a federal Freedom of Information Act request, show that for most of that time the agency projected confidence that it had enough water storage space in its six Missouri River dams to handle spring flooding. The AP also requested North Dakota Water Commission documents from the same period.

The communications do not contradict Army Corps assertions that officials believed they were prepared until unexpectedly heavy spring rains combined with melting snowpack to cause an untenable rise in water levels. Water releases from the Garrison Dam in western North Dakota were subsequently increased to 150,000 cubic feet per second, a volume five times greater than the corps had planned for the summer months.

The agency has since defended its river management against sharp criticism. Members of Congress have promised hearings on the flood's causes, and a group of Missouri River state governors met last week in Omaha and pledged to work together with the corps to make flood control a top priority.

In early March, Farhat said the corps was well prepared for the spring flooding season.

"The important thing is that the main stem reservoir system has plenty of room to store floodwaters if necessary," Farhat said in a March 4 statement, echoing sentiments voiced in previous months.

On April 26, Col. Robert Ruch, commander of the Corps' Omaha district, wrote to a number of Corps officials: "The bottom line is that we are buttoned up and ready for high water."

But Sando, in an April 20 letter to Brig. Gen. John McMahon, commander of the Army Corps division that includes the Missouri River dams, said he was concerned the corps "forecast does not adequately address the current conditions in the basin and the potential for above-normal precipitation this summer."

On April 20, Lake Sakakawea and Lake Oahe had some of the highest elevations on record for that month, Sando's letter said. "The downstream discharges seem low compared to the mountain snowpack, and the current availability of flood storage," he wrote.

McMahon replied that the corps constantly monitors water runoff.

By April 25, Farhat was expressing concern about "critical issues" with potential flooding.

"In other words, we must begin evacuating flood waters from the main stem system (as soon as possible)," she wrote in an email to Missouri state Rep. Randy Asbury, R-Higbee. "This may end up being one of the wettest years on record."

Still, increased water releases from the Missouri's upstream dams were delayed in late April and May because of flooding between Omaha and Kansas City, Mo., caused by local rainstorms.

The corps issued two public statements May 6 outlining comparatively small increases in water releases from North Dakota's Garrison Dam and the Gavins Point dam, in southeastern South Dakota.

The next statement, issued May 23 after the heavy rains in Montana and the Dakotas, proclaimed: "Lots more water coming down the Missouri River — now!"

Corps spokeswoman Monique Farmer said it ultimately was late May's heavy rains that "changed our operations and took away the flexibility of our original reservoir release plans."

Few residents along the river had flood insurance coverage when the high water hit, according to FEMA.

Only 470 households in Bismarck, a city of 61,000, and 80 households in neighboring Mandan, a city of about 18,000, had coverage through July 29, the agency said. Only 43 households in the 13,600-resident city of Pierre, S.D., had policies. And in Union County, S.D., home to Dakota Dunes, a posh town of 2,500 with homes valued at more than $1 million, 172 households bought flood insurance.

Dalrymple said he would like to see the Army Corps translate its reams of data on river flows, dam releases and water runoff in ways that allow ordinary people to analyze their own risks for flood damage.

"We need some kind of warning system that the public can comprehend easily, so that you don't have to be a water engineer to understand how to react to it," Dalrymple said.

Farmer said corps officials are available to help people interpret its data.

"We have worked very hard to keep the public informed of our operations, to make information understandable, and to keep people apprised of our reservoir release and flood fight operations," she said.


Find hundreds of photos, video and up-to-the-minute flood news from the Journal and KCAU-TV news teams at siouxcityjournal.com.

Monday, August 1, 2011

ArgusLeader.com | Missouri River Flooding 2011 flood questions pinned the US Army Corp of Engineers in a swirl of politics


Jody Farhat had a problem.

It was June 3, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' water management chief for the Missouri River basin had just received word that construction on a private levee in Dakota Dunes had been delayed.

The contractors needed the corps to postpone stepping up releases from Gavins Point Dam - pivot point in the battle between upper and lower basin interests on the Missouri River - for an extra day.

"Don't feel we have much choice here," Farhat wrote other corps officials.

Brig. Gen. John McMahon, commander of the corps' Northwestern Division, replied soon after: "Roger. Thanks. This is a smart 'political' move IF it's supportable from a (water management) perspective."

The next day, another official jumped on the email thread: "You know the politics - We'll do what we need to do."

They agreed that news of the schedule change should, for now, stay with the corps.

"Of course, nothing public," engineer Paul Boyd wrote.

This exchange - one among thousands of email conversations obtained by the Argus Leader and the Gannett Washington Bureau under the Freedom of Information Act - illustrates the political considerations that underlie the corps' decision-making in the midst of one of the worst flood seasons in the river's history.

Emails include Farhat's communications from June 1 to June 23, when the corps announced that releases from Gavins Point Dam would climb to a peak of 160,000 cubic feet per second. As with email traffic previously released by the Argus Leader, many names were redacted.

The correspondence offers a window into the internal deliberation and political maneuvering behind the flood fight, as corps officials hustled to put out fires and squelch rumors, spin journalists and hold off politicians whose inquiries sharpened as flooding intensified across the basin.

In the end, contractors in Dakota Dunes needed only a few hours of breathing room, not a whole day. "No big deal," Farhat said last week.

She said, moreover, that while the corps strives for transparency in its decision-making, it does not make public all of its internal deliberations.

"We make a decision, then we tell people about it. ... In that case, we didn't change anything. Had we decided to wait a day, we would have made an announcement," she said.

'We don't have time to run what-if scenarios'

As public scrutiny of the corps swelled in June, so did interest from South Dakota's congressional delegation, correspondence shows.

On June 1, Jennifer Greer, a higher-up at the corps' Washington headquarters, set up a meeting between congressional leaders, including Sen. John Thune, and Maj. Gen. Bo Temple, the corps' acting commanding general.

The meeting was June 8, the same day corps officials decided to increase releases from Fort Peck in Montana, following overnight rains that doubled the amount of water flowing into the reservoir. After the meeting, Greer posted her notes.

Thune "didn't advocate the position (that floodwater should have been evacuated sooner), but it is what he is hearing," Greer wrote.

"SEN Thune - asked how influential is Fish and Wildlife would be if there were updates to the manual. ... SEN Thune suggested that if the Corps needed assistance to lessen such influence (including legislation) they were willing to help. MG Temple stated that he did not see this as a problem - it is a balancing issue, but thought all would work together."

A few days earlier, Thune aide David Schwietert had written to ask whether more of the system's flood-control zone could have been freed up sooner. The senator, he wrote, is "curious what the modeling would show if the Corps had released additional water from Garrison/Oahe starting at the beginning of this year. ... Something tells me that based on the amount of precipitation/ runoff that we've witnessed, it would still have likely required 100+ cfs out of both dams."

Schwietert had to follow up twice before getting a response, and corps officials ignored subsequent requests to clarify information, Thune spokeswoman Andi Fouberg said last week.

An official drafted a response June 23 to Schwietert and sent it to Farhat for vetting. "I thought that for this response I'd stick more to the talking points even though I did make a few modifications," the official wrote.

Farhat responded the next day: "I definitely agree with the approach to stick to the talking points. We don't have time to run what-if scenarios now."

Farhat said last week that her office gave Thune's office a preliminary estimate but that she couldn't spare the time or staff to run the analysis.

"We've had many requests like that - a lot of folks were, what if this, what if that - and what we told every one of them is, there's a time to do that kind of analysis, and it's not in the heat of the battle," she said.

On June 13, an aide for Sen. Tim Johnson sent questions about the timing of the releases. Kayla Eckert Uptmor, planning branch chief for the Omaha District, responded that "we had no basis on which to increase flows to historic levels until the extraordinary rainfall event which resulted in a record runoff in May."

'Pounding that message' on upstream rains

Corps officials would come to lean on this talking point as they combatted the criticism that more water should have been moved downriver sooner. Considering the amount of flood storage available in the system and the saturating rains in May, releasing the water earlier would have done little good anyway, they said.

"It is important that we keep pounding that message with the locals so there is no misunderstanding that this flooding has been caused by these heavy rains upstream," one official wrote.

On June 15, Rep. Kristi Noem's office asked the corps for historical data on dam releases, snowpack and rainfall in the upper basin. The aide also requested copies of communications between the corps and Fort Pierre Public Works Director Brad Lawrence, who had just been profiled in a Pierre Capitol Journal article in which he told of having warned the corps to beware a flood "of biblical proportions."

After a conference call with the aide, Anne Thimsen, McMahon wrote that the matter almost was closed.

"Once we provide some additional info to Anne today, we'll be mission complete including follow up to your discussion with Rep Noem yesterday, pending any additional questions from Anne," he wrote. "All good."

Corps monitored the press, its coverage

Behind the scenes, corps public affairs staff were busy fielding interview requests, tweaking talking points for officials to crib from rating media coverage. An article in The Daily Republic of Mitchell was called "surprisingly honest," and an official in Pierre said a reporter for KSFY-TV in Sioux Falls "has been doing very good coverage for the Corps."

In a few cases, staffers even put together dossiers on reporters who requested information.

Division counsel also helped shape messaging. One corps lawyer offered suggestions to Farhat and Omaha District Commander Col. Bob Ruch following a conference call.

"I would suggest rather than starting the response with the fact that we'll conduct an after action report (which some people might read as our admitting there was an error)," the lawyer wrote, "that we lead with the talking points that we operated the system (in accordance with) the master manual this spring and were well positioned to accept the runoff - mother nature threw us a curve ball in May with record rains. We can then certainly use the sound bite that we'll do an internal review and whether or not any studies leads to changes in the operation of the system remains to be seen."

All month, requests for help flooded Farhat's inbox. Some asked for help correcting misinformation; others addressed concerns of dam and levee safety.

On July 16, a corps spokeswoman received a call from someone in Dakota Dunes who said releases from Gavins Point Dam were listed at 160,000 cubic feet on the corps website.

"This is a concern for us," the spokeswoman wrote, "solely because the woman who called said she thought we were lying to 'the public' about releases and has already reported it to the media."

A division-level contingency operations officer replied to Farhat: "So were we releasing at 160k accidentally or just reporting accidentally the wrong information?" (The caller was looking raw, unscreened data, Farhat said last week.)

On June 20, after an overnight rainstorm doused the Pierre area, managers at Oahe Dam requested that outflows be reduced by 5,000 cubic feet to alleviate drainage problems in the city. An official in the Omaha district sent the request to Ruch. "Spoke with (redacted)," the official wrote. "He was asking as a goodwill gesture due to the rain. There are no impacts from 5K at this time. (redacted) understands that we will probably continue with the planned releases."

Missouri congressman created PR challenge

In Missouri, Rep. Sam Graves was a constant burr in the corps' saddle, accompanying top-level officials on tours of flooded areas - http://www.documentcloud.org/documents/227784-5-11-june-2011-1.html#document/p449/a29193">"this is not an ambush," a Graves staffer once had to assure a corps go-between - while elsewhere denouncing them to media and citizen groups.

Kansas City, Mo., District Commander Col. Tony Hoffman, discussing one such "windshield tour," mulled whom to send: "For us not to have a presence from the uniformed side would not be good for (Northwestern Division) politically and it could come back to bite us down the road."

After the tour, Division Programs Director Witt Anderson briefed other corps officials.

"Our visit and tour with Cong Graves and Cong Jenkins for several hours later in the day had quite a different flavor - Graves not so negative; I imagine he was playing to his constituents."

He continued: "One thing we can bet on is Graves will push for review of (the master manual). I noted in the initial brief to him that the hydrology this year is a new data point which we will be looking at re MM. He locked on to that. ... The CG's OpEd piece should help if the media pick it up."

Anderson was referring to a column the corps was preparing to counter an alarmist story that had run in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, which predicted catastrophic dam failures on the river. Various officials were assembling a rebuttal under Ruch's byline.

The public affairs staff scouted news outlets for it, "aiming for Sunday circulation in the major dailies throughout the region," a corps spokeswoman wrote.

Through an aide, Graves also floated the idea of amending federal legislation to make flood control and navigation the only authorized purposes of Missouri management. He asked for feedback.

"I have serious reservations about being party to such a play — why would we?" McMahon wrote other officials.
"At the behest of a single Member? Let's discuss before we respond - this just feeds the mistrust of us and the tension between upper and lower basin."

Meanwhile, the Department of Agriculture, Senate Agriculture Committee and other farm interests demanded estimates of how much farmland eventually might be inundated. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack was considering a trip to Hamburg, Iowa, site of a recent levee breach.

"Corps of Engineers needs to do a series of public mtngs with ag producers to fully brief them on possible scenarios," a White House Cabinet Affairs officer wrote. "They are in the dark while making decisions with regard to inputs on crops that may ultimately be destroyed."

The email was forwarded to McMahon, who replied: "Witt: Please organize this so it doesn't turn on us - interesting how long it took them to wake up."

Reach Cody Winchester at cwincheste@argusleader.com or 331-2320.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Northwestern Division is located in Portland, Ore. The Omaha District of the Northwestern Division includes eastern Montana, the Dakotas, Nebraska and Iowa. The Kansas City District includes Kansas and Missouri. Here are some frequent names and acronyms:
WM: water management
MRJIC: Missouri River Joint Information Center
BLUF: Bottom Line Up Front
FYSA: For Your Situational Awareness
MRAPS: Missouri River Authorized Purposes Study, a wide-ranging, congressionally authorized study of the Flood Control Act of 1944.
MLDDA: Missouri Levee and Drainage District Association
Maj. Gen. Bo Temple: Acting Commanding General of Army Corps of Engineers
Maj. Gen. William Grisoli: Deputy Commanding General for Civil and Emergency Operations
Jennifer Greer: Chief of the corps’ Future Directions Branch/Civil Work
Brig. Gen. John McMahon: Division Commander
Col. Robert Tipton: Deputy Division Commander
Witt Anderson: Division Programs Director
Col. Tony Hoffman: Kansas City District Commander
Col. Robert Ruch: Omaha District Commander
Jody Farhat: Water management chief for Omaha District
Kim Thomas: Readiness branch chief for Omaha District
Paul Boyd: Hydraulic engineer in Omaha District
Kayla Eckert Uptmor: Planning branch chief for Omaha District
Erik Blechinger: Omaha Deputy District Engineer, spokesman for the Missouri River Joint Information Center
Monique Farmer: Corps spokeswoman
Eileen Williamson: Corps spokeswoman
Kevin Wingert: Corps spokesman
Rex Goodnight: Engineering division chief for Kansas City District
John Remus: Chief of the Omaha District hydrological engineering branch
Tom and Karla Waters: Members of the Missouri Levee & Drainage District Association
Bill Lay: Member of the Missouri Levee & Drainage District Association


These stories are based on thousands of pages of emails and other documents obtained from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers by the Argus Leader and Gannett Washington Bureau under the Freedom of Information Act. Read through the correspondence below.

YOUR TIPS: We're interested in what you find. If you see something in these documents that you find interesting, please contact us:
Reporter Jonathan Ellis, 605-575-3629, jonellis@argusleader.com
Reporter Cody Winchester, 605-331-2320, cwincheste@argusleader.com
Managing Editor Patrick Lalley, 605-331-2291, plalley@argusleader.com
Or call the newsroom at 1-800-530-NEWS (6397)

Monday, July 25, 2011

DesMoinesRegister.com | Emails warned Corps of Engineers about 2011 Missouri flood potential

Sioux Falls, S.D. - July 24, 2011 - The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers was warned from multiple sources early in the year that major flooding was likely on the Missouri River.

But by the time officials moved to "evacuate" upstream reservoirs in anticipation of snowmelt, they were hampered by downstream flooding that prevented them from releasing more water, internal emails show.

In January, Corps officials were aware of above-average snowpacks in the Rocky Mountains. And they had National Weather Service reports showing that soil conditions had water saturations as high as 99 percent in much of the Dakotas and Montana.
Until mid-April, officials were confident they could manage the situation without major flooding. But within a few weeks the situation unraveled, leading to the most serious flooding on the Missouri in decades.

The details about officials' developing understanding of the crisis come from thousands of pages of internal emails and reports obtained by the Argus Leader and Gannett Washington Bureau under the Freedom of Information Act. The request includes exchanges between Jody Farhat, the chief of the water management division for the Corps' Omaha District, and other top officials in the Corps as they struggled to manage the situation.
As flooding intensified, brought on by unusually high rainfalls, the Corps' response increasingly became scrutinized by state and federal political leaders up and down the river.

In the end, nearly everything that could go wrong did.

Now, as the flooding slowly recedes, political leaders in states along the Missouri River want to know what happened. Senators held a hearing last week.

Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad is scheduled to meet with governors of six other states and Corps officials on Aug. 19 in Omaha to discuss flood management on the Missouri.
While the states along the Missouri do have competing interests - shipping, recreation, wildlife protection - flood control is something they have in common.

"I think the governors want to understand one another," South Dakota Gov. Dennis Daugaard said Friday. "I'm hoping that while we might disagree on some management practices of the Corps, we should be able to agree that the first priority is flood control."
N.D. officials sensed trouble after February forecasts
Even in January, there was growing alarm. North Dakota officials worried about mounting snowfall totals and they made their concerns known to the Corps.

On the lower end of the river, Bill Lay, a Missouri farmer and member of the Missouri Levee and Drainage District Association, sent Farhat an email asking if there was enough storage capacity in lower reservoirs to handle the impending melt.

Farhat responded that the system was in "excellent shape to capture this year's runoff and prevent flood damage downstream." While the snowpack was up, "at this time it doesn't appear to be more than we can handle," she wrote Lay.
On the last day of January, the six upper basin dams held 56.9 million acre feet, just 100,000 acre feet above the Corps' annual flood control pool. In an interview Friday, Farhat said that the situation was under control in January.

"Being a little bit ahead of normal on the first of January is not anything to be concerned about," she said. Snowpack normally peaks on April 15. It didn't happen this year.

"At a time we're expecting it to turn over and start melting, it rose," she said.

February's climate outlook brought more bad news: predictions of higher snowfalls in the northern Rockies and lower-than-normal temperatures leading to a late runoff.

North Dakota officials sensed trouble. They called a meeting Feb. 10 of state and federal officials in Bismarck. The aim was to get federal and state agencies preparing then for possible flooding.

"There was no sense of panic at this point," said Cecily Fong, a spokeswoman with North Dakota's Department of Emergency Services who attended the meeting. "This was us getting together with all the people we felt had skin in the game."
On Feb. 11, a Corps memo noted "abnormally high snowpack and high snow-water equivalents throughout the Omaha District. The unusual conditions are widespread across a large geographical area." The memo concluded that all reservoirs with the exception of Garrison Dam would have their flood control pools "evacuated" before March 1.

But there were problems downstream. Tributaries to the Missouri were already flooding, and there were calls to hold back on releases from Gavins Point Dam near Yankton.

"I had many people in the lower basin calling up and asking us to reduce releases," Farhat said last week. "But we try to balance those upper basin and lower basin interests, always."

Managers of local segments felt concerns weren't heard

Meanwhile, the snow continued to pile up in March. On the last day of the month, Farhat received an email from Corps headquarters in Washington. "As you know, the record snowfall in Montana has created an unusually high flood risk this spring," it said.
Many of the names of the emailers corresponding with Farhat were redacted in the documents supplied to the Argus Leader and Gannett.

On April 1, Farhat received a runoff forecast from an official whose name was redacted. It predicted a major runoff.

Farhat responded: "While I don't oppose what you've come up with as your runoff forecast, I do believe it's on the strong side considering what is actually out there in terms of plains snowpack."

Mountain snowpack, she added, is "nothing to write home about."

By April 4, with storage in the reservoirs on the rise, she bumped up releases on the dams by 10,000 cubic feet per second. That same day, she received an email from an operations manager, whose name was redacted. The manager wrote that the concerns of other managers weren't being addressed on monthly forecast calls. The official said that one outcome might be that managers "will not even bother to call in, or provide input, if they feel like they're not being heard."
The official also asked whether averaging is the best way to predict precipitation. Freakish rain would soon create further problems for the basin.

"It just seems to me that when we're in a drought cycle we overestimate the precip and when we're in a wet cycle we underestimate it," the official wrote.

Farhat last week said that local managers, who control smaller segments of the river, don't have a systemwide perspective.

"My answer to that is, we're looking at the entire basin, the whole 529,000 square miles, and we monitor the snowpack. We knew how much snow was there, in the mountains and on the plains, and we had accounted for that in our monthly study," she said. "Had that rain not fallen, the system would have easily been able to manage that snowpack. We've seen snowpack above that in other years."

In April and May, heavy rain put earlier strategy in peril

But by late April, it was clear the situation was deteriorating. Top officials in the Corps exchanged a flurry of emails about conditions in the Missouri basin. On April 17, Maj. Gen. Bo Temple sent an email from headquarters quoting an official with the National Weather Service: All the ingredients were in place for major flooding.

There also was a new problem: The Mississippi River was flooding.
Farhat's counterpart in that district emailed her to see if flows from the Missouri could be eased. Farhat responded that she wasn't sure they could legally ramp down flows as much as they wanted. The issue in the Missouri River basin was critical, Farhat wrote, and it might end up being "one of the wettest years on record."

Lay, the Missouri farmer, emailed Farhat on April 25 telling her she might want to ease up on letting water out. She responded that the Corps was "between a rock and a hard place on the Missouri River this year."
By May 19, "extensive and heavy rain" was moving throughout the district. More was expected, and snowpacks through the Rockies remained well above normal.

On May 21, an official wrote Farhat that there was a lot of water running in ditches in the area near the Garrison Dam. Should a planned increase of 2,000 cubic feet per second the next day be held back to give the area time to drain? Farhat responded: "Sure."

The Corps also was notified May 21 that 8 inches of rain had fallen over 48 hours in portions of Montana.

And the rain kept falling.

News about increased flow left dam manager dismayed
On May 24, Billings, Mont., got a record 3.12 inches. Officials scrambled to begin increasing releases at Garrison to 85,000 cubic feet per second while also searching for additional storage capacity in mountain reservoirs above the system.

Officials clearly were dejected.

Todd Lindquist, the operations manager for the Garrison Dam, emailed Farhat on May 25 that North Dakota officials wanted to know if releases would go to 85,000 cubic feet per second. Farhat emailed back that he was correct, and to call if he needed more information.
Lindquist responded: "I'm headed home. I no longer look people in the eye and tell them the forecast is 85,000 cfs from Garrison."

Farhat responded: "I understand. I quit answering my phone after our call at 1:00."

On May 23, Farhat sent an email to Col. Robert Tipton, the deputy division commander for the Corps' Northwest Division. "Sir," she wrote, "we are very concerned about conditions from Montana to Missouri. We need to increase releases throughout the system." She predicted that Pierre and Bismarck would need "advanced measures" to protect public infrastructure. "The situation here is critical," she concluded.
A Corps official emailed Farhat on May 26 that Fort Pierre wanted the Corps to begin lowering a South Dakota lake.

"Even if this does not have a major effect on the water surface in Pierre/Fort Pierre, public perception will be GREATLY POSITIVELY influenced if we do this," the official wrote. "My recommendation is that we DO this as soon as we can. With where we are going, anything that could help or even be perceived as helping needs to be accomplished."
The release volumes on the six dams also were moving up aggressively. By May 26, officials forecast releases of 100,000 cubic feet per second by mid-June and 110,000 cfs by early July - amounts well above previous records.

Officials also were working on models of potential release volumes from the dams. Farhat noted May 28 that "just adding one rainfall event like the one two weekends ago pushed the releases up to 150,000 (cubic feet per second)."
More rain came.

And later that day the Corps issued a news release stating that five of six dams would ramp up to 150,000 cubic feet per second of releases by mid-June. The Corps blamed the rain.


E-mails show Corps of Engineer ignorned flood warnings
Great Plains Examiner
- July 25, 2011‎
Federal water managers were warned repeatedly early this spring by hydrologists and local officials that the reservoirs along the Missouri River were too high and could lead to flooding, according to a series of e-mails released publicly last week. ...

The buck stops with the corps
Bismarck Tribune - ‎Jul 24, 2011‎
The leadership of the US Army Corps of Engineers refuses to take responsibility for the agency's actions, or inactions, related to massive flooding on the Missouri River in May, June and now July. The corps, rather, puts responsibility on a "perfect ...

Excerpts of Corps of Engineers email traffic
Sioux Falls Argus Leader - ‎Jul 24, 2011‎
Here are some key points on the Missouri River flooding timeline, as reflected in the email traffic earlier this year of Jody Farhat, director of the water management division of the US Army Corps of Engineers' Omaha District. Jan. ...

Friday, July 22, 2011

James River in SD Faces Prolonged Flooding annually and worsened this year due to historic Missouri River flooding at Yankton


Dave Bartel of Huron, project coordinator for the James River Water Development District (JRWDD), gives a progress report during Thursday’s JRWDD board meeting at the Kelly Inn.

Friday, July 22, 2011 1:14 AM CDT

James River flooding looks to continue for weeks, and the final outcome won’t be known for some time, according to a James River Water Development District (JRWDD) official.

The James River’s woes are worsened by running into historic Missouri River flooding at Yankton, JRWDD manager Darrell Raschke said Thursday.

Currently, the Army Corps of Engineers is running the James River at 9,000 cubic feet per second (cfs) downstream at Yankton, Raschke said.

“We have no idea when (the water) will go down,” Raschke told the JRWDD board at its meeting in Yankton.

The James River Valley was already flooding when its northern source was recently inundated with rainfall, Raschke said.

“They received 4 to 6 inches of rain at Jamestown (N.D.) and 3 to 5 inches of rain at Aberdeen,” he said. “The water will still be coming down here (to Yankton) in the not too distant future.”

The James River runs into the Missouri River at Yankton, where Gavins Point Dam releases are running a historic 160,000 cfs, or more than twice the old record.

High water levels are found throughout the James River basin, starting in the north, Raschke explained.

“At Stratford (in Brown County), the river is at 21.6 feet. It’s at record levels,” he said. “The flood stage is 14 feet, so it’s running more than 7 feet above flood stage.”

The James River is one of the flattest rivers in the world, meaning the flood water will meander southward over the course of several weeks, Raschke said. The district will need to assess the damage when the waters recede, he said.

“The question is: What will it be like when it’s all done?” he asked.

The JRWDD is working to restore some of the inundated river bottom land, Raschke said. However, that could take as long as 2013, he said.

“With the attitude in Washington D.C., I don’t see money coming to us,” he said, referring to the federal budget situation.

Yankton County Commissioner Allen Sinclair spoke to the JRWDD board, asking them to keep officials and residents in the southern counties more informed about the district’s activities.

Currently, the JRWDD board meets once a year in Yankton, for the July budget meeting, Sinclair said. The board meets six times a year, rotating its meetings throughout the water district.

Raschke also meets periodically with the Yankton County Commission and makes visits to the area.

“We want to know what your (JRWDD) board is doing for Yankton County,” Sinclair said.

Yankton County has appointed a drainage board, which is expected to draft a drainage ordinance by the end of the year, Sinclair said. He also looks for a statewide push for drainage legislation.

Sinclair appealed to JRWDD officials to do what they can to reduce the impact of James River flooding.

“We’re at the bottom of the system. We’re going to get a lot of water, but we hope you slow it down,” he said. “Try to avoid as much damage on this end of the state.”

Sinclair said he didn’t want to pit one JRWDD region against another. He also asked that the JRWDD experts provide answers for technical questions that the county commissioners can’t answer for their constituents.

Sinclair said he feared the losses sustained by the James River Valley long after the floodwaters recede.

“What long-term changes are going on with the Jim River and Missouri River?” he asked.

James River flooding has become a regular event, inundating thousands of acres annually, Sinclair said.

“It would be wonderful if it didn’t happen every year,” he said. “We ask that you (as a JRWDD board) do what you can.”

In other business, the JRWDD board approved the fiscal year 2012 budget with property taxes of $959,725. The district was allowed a 2.1 percent increase for inflation and 1.7 percent increase for growth in its valuation.

The budget includes the salaries of $98,000 for Raschke and $53,000 for administrative assistant Judy Smoyer.

The budget saw little change from last year, Raschke told the Press & Dakotan.

“We moved some dollars around, and we funded for publications and some website development and for salary adjustments,” he said.

The JRWDD allowed $533,000 for projects next year, Raschke said. The district receives project assistance requests far above the available funding, but local entities are still encouraged to submit their proposals, he said.

In another matter, Raschke told the Press & Dakotan that redistricting has been completed for the nine JRWDD director districts. Each district will contain about 13,600 residents. The district covers 21,000 square miles.

Other business at Thursday’s meeting included:

• approval of $50,000 to the City of Mt. Vernon for construction of a waste water system;

• amended the Brown County LiDar funding to $30,937;

• an update on the Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDL) assessment and implementation activities on the James River;

• approval of Phase Two of the finalization of the strategic plan, project assistance application and ranking system;

• appointment, on a 5-4 vote, of Harrington & Associates of Huron as auditor for the 2010, 2011 and 2012 annual financial audits. The other proposal was received from Snow, Huether & Coyle of Huron.

The board also met in executive session during the meeting and later toured southern areas of the James River district.

The next JRWDD regular meeting is set for Sept. 22 in Aberdeen.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

SIOUX CITY JOURNAL | The EPA's National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) determines whether expensive dikes and levees stay or go after the 2011 Missou


SIOUX CITY IA -- Many businesses, industries and government entities that built costly levees and dikes to safeguard their buildings against this summer's Missouri River flooding don't want to tear down the protective structures after the flooding subsides.... Brown noted a number of federal and state agencies have jurisdiction, including the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources and agencies enforcing the National Environmental Policy Act. He and Clark said local officials will work with flood managers at those agencies to see if they will approve waivers allowing the flood structures to remain...

read more

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Federal Emergency Management Agency FEMA has spent more than $2 Billion to buy-out land in flood prone areas over a nearly 2 decade period

3:00 PM Jul 12, 2011

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has spent more than $2 billion to buy out land in flood-prone areas over a nearly two-decade period.

The buyout program launched after widespread flooding in 1993 now has gobbled up almost 37,000 properties -- tearing down the homes that were there and prohibiting people from rebuilding. In some cases, entire neighbors and small towns have disappeared as a
result of the buyouts.

So far, the greatest number of flood buyouts has occurred in Missouri, though the value of bought-out properties has been higher in coastal states such as Texas and North Carolina.

Another round of buyouts may be in the works for communities affected by flooding this year along the Missouri River valley and the lower Mississippi River.


Saturday, July 9, 2011

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack questions Major Gen. Meredith W.B. Temple, the acting commander of the US Army corps of engineers on mismanagement

The Associated Press
| Posted: Friday, July 8, 2011 7:00 pm

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has taken the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to task for its handling of the Missouri River in a letter questioning its decision not to release more water from dams earlier in the spring to prevent prolonged flooding this summer.

The river is near historic flood levels along the more than 800 miles it stretches from the Gavins Point Dam in South Dakota to its confluence with the Mississippi River. More than 560,000 acres in seven states have flooded, including nearly 447,000 acres of farmland, Vilsack spokesman Justin DeJong said. The flooding followed unexpected spring rains and the melting of deep snowpack in the Rocky Mountains.

Vilsack outlined his concerns in a three-page letter to Major Gen. Meredith W.B. Temple, the acting commander of the corps, and obtained by The Associated Press.

Although Vilsack said he wasn't in a position to judge how the corps handled its dams, he asked pointed questions about the agency's decision not to release more water earlier and criticized it for not providing farmers and ranchers with more up-to-date information.

His comments add to a growing chorus of officials questioning the corps' handling of the situation.

U.S. Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., announced Friday that a bipartisan group of 14 senators from Missouri River states had requested a Senate hearing on the corps' management of the river, and the AP obtained a letter earlier this week in which Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad expressed frustration with the corps even before the latest flooding and urged the governors of Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska to join him in discussing the formation of a new group of downstream states.

Vilsack noted the corps said on March 3 that there was no need for early releases from the Gavins Point Dam and that there would be little flooding unless the region received a lot of rain.

"Agriculture producers point to this report and others in justifying their concerns, and they need answers as to why releases were not made to allow for more storage in the dam system," Vilsack wrote in the letter dated June 28. "They point to forecasts related to snowpack and snowmelt and ask why there wasn't more planning or more public conversations about the implications of operating the river under such conditions."

DeJong declined to comment on the letter.

Corps spokeswoman Jasmine Chopra defended the agency's management of the river, saying it released more water than usual from Missouri River dams last fall and during the winter and this year's flooding was unprecedented. However, she also said the corps would take another look at its response when the river receded.

"The corps fully intends to conduct a full-scale assessment of this year's flood to determine the effects and learn where adjustment might be warranted in the future," Chopra said.

While Vilsack addressed the corps in his role as agriculture secretary, he also has an interest in the matter as a former Iowa governor. About a third of the flooded land is in Iowa, including 158,000 acres of farmland.

Vilsack wrote extensively in his letter about farmers' and ranchers' lack of information regarding upcoming water releases. When he took a trip to the region in mid-June, farmers and ranchers were making plans based on information that hadn't been updated since June 1, he said. Also, farmers assumed water releases would continue at 150,000 cubic feet per second and were surprised when the corps increased that to 160,000 cfs after more rain.

"This news was delivered via the mass media with little, if any, outreach to those impacted," Vilsack wrote.

He asked that the corps use the Agriculture Department's field offices and communications staff to better communicate with the public. He also expressed hope the corps would take a hard look at its actions.

"I am hopeful that, subsequent to this disaster, the corps will embark on a thorough evaluation of the decision-making leading up to and during the flooding to identify pitfalls and lessons learned," he wrote. "It would be helpful to engage the public in this process."

The Missouri River is expected to remain near record flood stage into the fall, which farmers and agricultural groups said could result in long-term damage to the land. Soil could be washed away, and trash and silt deposited, said Keith Olsen, president of the Nebraska Farm Bureau.

O. Eugene Johnson of Windsor Heights, Iowa, has 240 acres near Hamburg that he typically leases out for corn, but this summer, it's under 6 feet of water. He also worries that by the time the Missouri recedes, it will have cut a new channel in the area.

"I'm concerned that if the land is destroyed and the river is changed, I'll end up with permanent water on my land," Johnson said.


Friday, July 8, 2011

FEMA named June 1 2011, when floodwaters were first released from the Garrison Dam in North Dakota, as the official starting point of flooding

Fremont Tribune
Fremont, Nebraska

FEMA named June 1, when floodwaters were first released from the Garrison Dam in North Dakota, as the official starting point of flooding. That has implications for insurance coverage.

"I've heard of this date, June 1 or June 2," said Region 5/6 Emergency Manager Bill Pook, whose area includes Burt, Dodge and Washington counties, "that's bull because on May 25 I was up to my knees in floodwater.

"I know that our people were flooded by May 25," Pook said.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

North Dakota's US Senators say they want an immediate investigation of how so much water was allowed to flow through the Souris-Mouse River complex i

Jul 4 2011 8:58PM


The river set records at every location along its path through north-central North Dakota - most often three or four feet over previous high levels.

In addition, they are part of a working group involving senators from all states along the Missouri River - a river that is also experiencing major flooding this year.

Senator John Hoven says there are answers that need to come from the US Army Corps of Engineers, which regulates the Missouri and Mouse Rivers in flood situations.

(Sen. John Hoeven, -R- ND) "We're going to want to know from the Corps, what happened, why did it happen, and how can we prevent it from happening again in the future. That what Senator Conrad and I are going to ask because we have to take steps to prepare for next year." Senator Kent Conrad says Corps officials point to unprecedented snowmelt and rain storms as causes of the Mouse River flooding. But he says it's important to revise working orders to deal with unexpected problems.

(Sen. Kent Conrad, -D- ND) "The management of the reservoirs is based on previous data, how high did the river get in previous years. That's all changed because there is going to have to be a re-doing of the manual that guides how these reservoirs are run because the facts have changed and changed dramatically."

The senators say they'll be pressing the Corps of Engineers for a quick start to the investigation to assure flood protections of some sort are in place before next spring.

But those protections would not be any permanent fixes - those projects are likely to take years to come



Western Flood Control Sites – North Dakota: Lake Ashtabula, Homme Lake, Souris River

Location/Project Components

Homme Lake is 2 miles west of Park River, North Dakota, on the South Branch of the Park River. It has an earthen embankment, intake works, control gate, and overflow concrete spillway. Walsh County, North Dakota, leases land to operate a recreation area with overnight camping, a day-use area and a boat launch.

Lake Ashtabula (Baldhill Dam) is 12 miles northwest of Valley City, North Dakota, on the Sheyenne River. It is comprised of an embankment; concrete overflow emergency spillway; service spillway with three tainter gates; significant land holdings; and several overnight camping, swimming, boat launching, picnic and playground facilities. About 2,500 acres are used for wildlife management.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service owns and operates the Souris River complex (Lake Darling Dam/Upper Souris and J. Clark Salyer National Wildlife Refuges). Lake Darling is approximately 20 miles northwest and J. Clark Salyer is 65 miles northeast of Minot, North Dakota. The Corps has operation, maintenance, rehabilitation and replacement responsibilities as defined in a 1989 memorandum of understanding and subsequent defining documents.

Homme and Ashtabula are multiple-purpose sites with flood risk management, recreation and environmental stewardship business functions.

Lake Ashtabula site staff provides operation and maintenance activities for all three sites. The Fish and Wildlife Service staffs Souris River; the Corps supports some cyclical and noncyclical maintenance costs. Lake Ashtabula also provides significant support to readiness (emergency) response activities in local river basins and discharges’ impact on flood response in downstream cities. Lake Ashtabula provides a backup water supply for communities on the Sheyenne and Red Rivers.


Sunday, July 3, 2011

Video: Flooding blame?
By KCAU-TV Sioux City IA
Many are mad at the Army Corps of Engineers for the flood. Is it their fault or the "master manual" they must follow?

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Once again the Pick Sloan Act and the dams that were built out of that act are coming into play in the lives of Crow Creek Dakota Oyate citizens

A state of war between Crow Creek Dakotah Oyate and the US Government

The Water Treatment Facility at Crow Creek is about to be rendered inoperable by the united states army corps of engineers opening the flood release gates at the big bend dam because the water intake for the water treatment facility is located just upstream from the emergency spillway which is releasing 1.2 million gallons of water per second. This large amount of water flowing over the intake has clogged filters with fine sand and sediment which is being carried by this huge amount of water that MUST be released.

THREE THOUSAND PEOPLE are about to be without drinking water.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is asking for an explanation of the flooding that would occur should a dam break upstream of two NE nuke plants

June 30, 2011
Omaha World Herald

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission is asking for an explanation of the flooding that would occur should a dam break upstream of two Nebraska nuclear plants it monitors.

Combined, the six U.S. Army Corps of Engineers dams on the flood-swollen Missouri River comprise one of the largest reservoir systems in the country. The dams are releasing historic amounts of water during what will be a summer of managed flooding in the Missouri River valley.

On Wednesday, the NRC regional office that oversees Nebraska sent an official request to the corps for its 2009 and 2010 analyses of what would happen if a dam fails.

Fort Calhoun Nuclear Station, 19 miles north of Omaha, has been taken offline because of the flooding. The river surrounds the plant to a depth of about two feet.

About 70 miles south of Omaha, Cooper Nuclear Station remains online. On Thursday, the river was about three feet below the level that would require the plant to shut down.

Anton Vegel, director of the division of reactor safety for the Arlington, Tex., office of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission made the request to Col. Robert J. Ruch, commander of the Omaha District of the corps. The Omaha district oversees the dams.



KFAB.com Omaha | Corps of Engineers - along with Fish & Wildlife Service, EPA, UN Agenda 21 freaks, and Congress - got caught with their pants down

The Corps -- along with the Fish and Wildlife Service, EPA, other environmental groups, the United Nations Agenda 21 freaks, and Congress--
got caught with their pants down ...and the pallid sturgeon in the bed next to them.

A picture from the Fish and Wildlife Service of an Army Corps of Engineers employee with a pallid sturgeon.

Though the letter from the Brigadier General that leads the report talks about the "much above" average runoff in 2009 and 2010, according to pages 3 and 4 of THIS REPORT, the Army Corps of Engineers only considered up to 2006 when planning on the 2010-2012 management of the reservoirs, dams, and the river.

Why not include the recent wet years? Why not consult the weather experts? Because, as it says on page 4 of the Corps' Annual Operating Report (linked above), 'forecasting future precipitation is very difficult."

That may be, but that's exactly what the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration does! If fact, had the Corps consulted THIS REPORT FROM THE NOAA, they would have realized how wrong they were to err on the side of drought rather than flood.


Did they think 2011 was going to be a drought year because their 1998-2006 data (mostly drought years) told them so?

Or did they plan on some flooding this year to influence landowners


to sell their property?


The Corps always says they just follow orders. Well, one of their owners was to get that riverside land ... a little flooding might do the trick. When the huge snow and rain erupted, the little flood they hoped for turned into this big, scary flood.

The Corps -- along with the Fish and Wildlife Service, EPA, other environmental groups, the United Nations Agenda 21 freaks, and Congress -- got caught with their pants down ... and the pallid sturgeon in the bed next to them.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Nebraska Senator Ben Nelson is concerned the Army Corps of Engineers has not taken the state's two nuclear power plants into consideration

Posted: 2:53 PM Jun 29, 2011
WOWT.com Omaha, NE

Senator Ben Nelson is urging the Army Corps of Engineers to make the safety of the Fort Calhoun Nuclear Plant and Cooper Nuclear Plants a top priority for flood management.

"The Corps must make it clear that the safety of the Fort Calhoun and Cooper nuclear power plants is among its highest priorities during the ongoing floods," Nelson said Wednesday morning. "Nebraskans, Iowans and others throughout the Midwest deserve to know everything is being done to make sure the nuclear plants continue to operate safely."

Nelson sent a letter to Brig. Gen. John McMahon, who oversees the Missouri River Basin for the Army Corps of Engineers. Nelson expressed his concern over comments from a Corps spokesperson saying the state's nuclear plants are not being factored into the Corps' schedule of dam releases.

"Those comments need to be clarified by the Corps," Nelson said. "I asked General McMahon to explain what steps the Corps is taking with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and the plant managers to make sure the plants are safe and, more importantly, that the public is safe."

In his letter, Nelson also asked the Corps to do a full-scale review of their procedures and actions along the Missouri River after the flood is over.

Nelson's letter to Brig. Gen. John McMahon:

June 29, 2009

Dear General McMahon:

As the Missouri River continues to experience record levels of flooding, I wanted to follow up on our meeting, held in my Washington, D.C. office last Thursday, to discuss management of this flood by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (the Corps).

As stated during that meeting, it will be necessary for the Corps to do a full-scale assessment of its procedures and actions along the Missouri River once the floodwaters recede to ensure that those affected by the flood - and the American people as a whole - have satisfactory answers as to why this event happened and how we can avoid such devastation in the future.

As I also noted, people in my home state of Nebraska understandably have a lot of questions and anxiety about the flooding and how it is going to impact their safety, their property and their belongings. Clear and accurate communication is critical and must be a priority.

With this in mind, I wanted to bring to your attention some comments in an article from yesterday's Omaha World Herald, "Nuke Plant Safe Amid Unique Peril" (copy enclosed). In this article, Corps spokesman Erik Blechinger stated, "Nebraska's two nuclear plants aren't being factored into the Army Corps of Engineers schedule of dam releases." He went on to say, "Flood-risk reduction is our priority right now. We are working closely with OPPD and NPPD, so I would never say that we wouldn't consider adjusting releases, but I can't imagine all the possible scenarios. Currently, there is just no flexibility in the system."

Given our discussion last week on the Corps' responsibility to protect the people, communities, and infrastructure along the Missouri River, additional concern and caution would seem necessary in addressing the two nuclear facilities. While the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) maintains that both the Omaha Public Power District's (OPPD) Fort Calhoun Nuclear Generating Station and the Nebraska Public Power District's (NPPD) Cooper Nuclear Station remain safe, given the current forecasts projected for the Missouri River, there is still concern that the stations would be vulnerable if there is a continued rise in the River's level, potentially putting the public at risk.

Consequently, I would ask you to clarify whether the Corps will consider the safety of Nebraska's two nuclear plants adjacent to the Missouri River as dam releases are scheduled. I also wish to learn more as to what steps the Corps is taking in conjunction with the NRC, OPPD, and NPPD to ensure the structural integrity of the structures protecting the Fort Calhoun and Cooper Nuclear Stations.

General, given the heightened state of concern from the public at large regarding the flood's impact on Nebraska's two nuclear facilities, I am certain you are appreciative of the trepidation arising from the above comments by the Corps. As such, I request an expedited response to my questions herein. If you need further information from me in order to respond, please contact me directly or have your staff contact Erick Lutt of my staff at (202) 224-6551.


E. Benjamin Nelson
United States Senator

Big Bend HYDRO-ELECTRIC Dam in South Dakota (on land stolen from the Crow Creek tribe) will have it's spillway inspected on July 1, 2011


June 28, 2011

Fort Thompson, S. D.—The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will inspect the spillway structure at Big Bend Dam July 1. Spillway gates will close so that personnel can inspect the concrete apron, wing walls and dissipation pillars via boat.

One of the tools that will be used during the inspection is a side scan sonar system since portions of the spillway structure are out of view, underwater, said Operations Project Manager Keith Fink.

The purpose of the inspection is to assess the spillway’s performance after recent, prolonged water releases. The inspection should be completed July 1.







Crow Creek Reservation Losing Power from Central Electric Cooperative

Monday, March 23, 2009

South Dakota-based Central Electric Cooperative has a policy in effect to provide electricity to its customers in the winter months regardless of their ability to pay. However, Crow Creek Reservation tribal members are getting their power turned off by the company in the midst of extreme blizzard conditions.

In numerous instances, Crow Creek residents have medical conditions that require the use of electricity, and many other residents have small children and/or elderly in the home.

In a place where tribal members remember promises from Central Electric to provide electrical power free of charge, tribal residents’ pay electricity rates one-third higher than the national average.

In 1955, Central Electric displaced an entire town of American Indians on the Crow Creek Reservation with the construction of the Big Bend Dam, built to provide a source of electricity. Read the entire article in Indian Country Today.


Lakota Foundation | Lakota people live on less than 7 dollars a day. They need cloths, school supplies, resources.

The Foundation for the Lakota Children


South Dakota has one of the largest populations of Native Americans on reservations particularly a Tribe called the Lakota . They have the highest rate of poverty in the world despite aid from the government, which has never been sufficient. Children are committing suicide at an alarming rate, one of the highest percentages of suicide in the world, next to Japan. Lakota people live on less than 7 dollars a day. They need cloths, school supplies, resources.



End the attacks of the USA on the indigenous people of the world.


  © Blogger templates Newspaper III by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP