Intensified Development Raises Flood Risk

1 decade 5 months 3 weeks ago April 05, 2006 Apr 5, 2006 Wednesday, April 05 2006 Wednesday, April 05, 2006 1:06:41 PM CDT in News
Researchers say the high rate of development along the Mississippi river significantly raises the risk of a flood in Missouri. More than 14,000 acres of flood plain has been developed around St. Louis since 1993, which reduces that area's ability to store water in future floods. And efforts to protect the city from floods may have increased the risk. A Southern Illinois University professor says as much as 85 percent of the Mississippi there is confined behind levees, which have raised flood levels up to 12 feet higher than they were a century ago. That parallels the situation in New Orleans, which suffered catastrophic flooding when levees failed in the wake of Hurricane Katrina last summer. Research details are being presented Saturday at an annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

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