Climate Change – the Great Political Equalizer

Published: July 10, 2013

Original Presentation by Tony Messenger, columnist at St. Louis Post-Dispatch

July 10, 2013

Living with the Missouri River is hard. Sharing it across such a massive watershed with its diverse landscapes, cultures and water needs is harder. Throw in the uncertainties of a changing climate and things get really sticky.

In the past three years we’ve had extreme flooding followed by extreme drought followed by another flood . Since the 2011 flood, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch has been running a series of articles titled “One River, One Problem”calling for states, tribes and stakeholders to come together and develop a sensible plan for management of the Missouri River.

St. Louis Post Dispatch columnist Tony Messenger joined us to discuss his ideas for what needs to happen along the river, what positive steps and missteps politicians are already making on this and what role a changing climate plays in all of these decisions. The three main goals outlined in the articles are: creating more room in the floodplain to let the river roam during extreme events, as outlined in the original Flood Control Act of 1944; increasing flood storage capacity in the reservoir system; and reducing development encroachment on the floodplain.

We were delighted to have Tony Messenger return with his unique perspective on the issues facing our watershed.




A few specific editorials from the series:

“Time to give the Missouri River Room to Roam” – October 26, 2011

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