The Stream, June 26, 2019: Mississippi River Flood Cleanup Will Top $2 Billion, Advocacy Group Says

The Global Rundown

An advocacy group estimates that flood repairs along the Mississippi River will top $2 billion. Rain eases a three-year drought in Canada. As developers of a Minnesota copper-nickel mine seek funding, environmental activists warn the mine could cause water pollution. Keurig Dr Pepper pulls Peñafiel bottled water from stores after reports that the product contains high levels of arsenic. U.S. flood victims hope to persuade lawmakers to stop development in floodplains. 

“Development continues in places that are less than ideal – known floodplains and future ones.” –Carlos Martin, senior fellow at the think tank Urban Institute, in reference to infrastructure in vulnerable low-lying areas across the U.S. A group of residents from 16 states is planning to “bombard local, state and national politicians with videos, photographs, emails and postcards documenting flooding.” The group hopes to see lawmakers tighten restrictions on development in flood zones. Reuters

In context: Historic Missouri River Flood Damages Water Infrastructure.

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By The Numbers

$2 billion+ Amount needed to restore communities along the Mississippi River after months of flooding, according to the Mississippi River Cities and Towns Initiative advocacy group. Devastating floods have swamped cities and farmland, and in some southern areas, the river has been above flood stage for over 200 days. As more storms hit the region, the cost of cleanup and rebuilding will continue to rise. Associated Press

$950 million Amount of financing that PolyMet Mining Corp. is seeking from Minnesota bankers in order to build a proposed copper-nickel mine, despite concerns over the mine’s environmental impact. Green groups say the project could cause water pollution problems, and the state’s legislative auditor recently called for an investigation into the mine’s water quality permit. The Washington Post

Science, Studies, and Reports

Keurig Dr Pepper withdrew Peñafiel brand unflavored mineral spring water from U.S. stores after the Center for Environmental Health found high levels of arsenic in the product. Consumer Reports and the Center for Environmental Health also found high levels in Starkey Water, owned by Whole Foods, although the levels did not exceed the F.D.A. standard of 10 parts per billion. The New York Times

On the Radar

Rains swept across much of Canada during the past week, easing a three-year drought that has disrupted farming and livestock. In southwestern Saskatchewan, more than 65 millimeters (2.6 inches) of precipitation was recorded. Reuters

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