This Day On The Street
Continue to site
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Low Mississippi River Water Levels May Halt Barges

"Until Congress gives a higher priority to the nation's great rivers, and acts as a referee among competing interests, all of us will pay," the editorial read.

The stakes are especially high in St. Louis. The region is home to several barge companies, two of the nation's largest coal companies and countless other businesses that use the Mississippi to move their products both for domestic and international use.

Knight Hawk Coal Co. of the St. Louis-area town of Percy, Ill., uses the river to ship 80 percent of the 4.5 million tons of the black ore it bores out of southern Illinois mines each year. Closure of the river could force the company to consider something it's never done â¿¿ part with some of its 400 employees.

"If they were to close the river for any significant period, I think we would have to be in a position where we'd have to look at layoffs," said Andrew Carter, a company vice president. "... Level heads need to prevail, and this river needs to stay open."

Commerce on the river always has been subject to nature's whims â¿¿ ice and floods, in addition to drought, can stop river traffic.

Locks and dams built along the upper Mississippi River starting in the 1930s have helped balance the ups and downs of the waterway. Also, the corps spends months each year dredging the river bottom, adding depth so barges don't scrape. Dredging in the middle-Mississippi began a month early, in July, because of the drought, said Mike Petersen of the corps office in St. Louis.

The corps also plans to use explosives to remove two rock formations on the river bottom in southern Illinois that can impede barges during low-water periods, though that work isn't expected to start until February.

Trade groups for river interests are asking Barack Obama's administration for a presidential declaration that would force the corps to maintain the existing Missouri River flow and expedite removal of the rock formations.

3 of 4

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
SYM TRADE IT LAST %CHG

Markets

DOW 18,040.37 +29.69 0.16%
S&P 500 2,111.73 +4.34 0.21%
NASDAQ 5,082.9290 +12.9030 0.25%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs