NGRREC℠ Scientist Speaks to Mississippi River Commission

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Article by: Louise Jett, ljett@lc.edu

National Great Rivers Research and Education Center Watershed Scientist John Sloan testified to the Mississippi River Commission (MRC) on April 9 on board the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ (USACE) motor vessel, the Mississippi, which was tied up to the Cape Girardeau water front.

“NGRREC’s mission is to continue to expand the national and international reaches of our research and educational programs,” Sloan said. “The USACE has been an important partner in our initial accomplishments, and we are grateful for their support.”

The purpose of the testimonial was to tell members of the MRC about the mission and activities of NGRREC℠. General John Peabody, president of the MRC, has visited the Jerry F. Costello Confluence Field Station, NGRREC’s research facility, a couple times during the past year, but other MRC members were less familiar with the work of NGRREC℠. In particular, Sloan focused on NGRREC℠ programs that have been supported by the USACE, or that are of interest to the MRC.

“The goal of NGRREC is to continue to be a source of scientific expertise for the USACE and other agencies and organizations involved in managing natural resources, not only in the Mississippi River Basin, but for other great rivers around the country and the world,” Sloan said.

Sloan said the meeting was well attended, and a total of 15 testimonials were provided by people representing a variety of public, private and individual interests, including the mayors from four river towns, representatives from several levee districts, representatives of the barge industry, members of the Illinois Farm Bureau, employees from the Missouri Department of Natural Resources and members of the Sierra Club.

The National Great Rivers Research and Education Center is a partnership of Lewis and Clark Community College, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and the Prairie Research Institute’s Illinois Natural History Survey. NGRREC℠ aspires to be a leader in scholarly research, education and outreach related to the interconnectedness of big rivers, their floodplains and watersheds, and the people who use them.

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