sediment from tributaries to the Missouri River downstream from Gavins Point Dam are unlikely under present sediment management rules because these rivers have their own large storage reservoirs.

There has been a renewed interest in the prospects for increasing the amounts of sediment transported downstream by the Missouri River and delivered to Louisiana. However, there is little potential in the near future for any strategy described in this chapter to reestablish volumes of downstream sediment delivery that approach preregulation sediment volumes delivered to Louisiana. The Corps of Engineers Missouri River habitat construction projects could release enough sediment to increase the supply to the Mississippi delta by 10-20 percent for at least the next 15 years (depending on the trapping efficiency of the Mississippi floodplain). Remobilization of sediment in Lewis and Clark Lake would at best increase the supply of wetland constructing sediment to the Mississippi delta by only a few percent. Other prospects for mobilizing sediment in the Missouri and its tributaries are not only difficult to conceive of for the near future, but they are more likely to have local effects on bar building and local channel mobility and complexity than to contribute significantly to wetland construction in the Mississippi delta.

The amounts of sediment likely to be available for transport from the Missouri River to the Mississippi River delta are smaller than the quantities that made the journey before the construction of mainstem dams and implementation of the major bank-stabilization structures.



The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement