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Bob Hoff Columbia Snake River navigation open for business
by Bob Hoff, click here for bio

Program: Farm and Ranch Report
Date: March 29, 2011

Farm and Ranch March 29, 2011 Inland commercial navigation on the Columbia Snake River System officially resumed over this past weekend following a planned closure that began back on December 10th of last year. During the shutdown the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers replaced three downstream gates, at the The Dalles, John Day and Lower Monumental navigation locks and performed maintenance on the five others.

Kristin Meira, the government relations director for the Pacific Northwest Waterways Association which represents users of the navigation system, says the outage went about as well as anyone could have hoped.

Meira: “And a lot of the reason for that is that the farmers, the shippers, the ports and everyone else on the river system had a lot of time to plan. If this had been an emergency closure we would have been in a very different situation, but thankfully the Corps of Engineers was able to give everyone a great deal of notice and farmers and others were able, for the large part, work around this closure.”

Meira says the next project her association is focused on is repair of the jetties at the mouth of the Columbia River which the Corps is still studying.

Meira: “If one of those jetties were to breach it would close off the entrance to this entire river system and all the work we have done on channel deepening and now on locks would be for naught.”

Among other things the Columbia Snake River System is the number one U.S. wheat and barley export gateway.

I’m Bob Hoff and that’s the Northwest Farm and Ranch Report on Northwest Aginfo Net.

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