Water Resources:

Corps' 1988 Missouri River Water Releases Met Guidelines

RCED-91-3: Published: Nov 7, 1990. Publicly Released: Nov 7, 1990.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO examined: (1) whether the Corps released Missouri River water during 1988 specifically to aid navigation on the Mississippi River; and (2) the Corps' legal authority to take such action.

GAO found that: (1) the Corps did not increase water releases from the Missouri River to specifically aid navigation on the Mississippi River in 1988; (2) during the Missouri River navigation season, water released from the system provided river flows that generally met or fell below navigation flow targets; (3) the Corps did not increase target levels because of deteriorating river conditions on the Mississippi; (4) Corps records showed that water releases made during the winter and navigation seasons were in accordance with its guidelines; and (5) the Corps lacked the legal authority to operate reservoirs on the Missouri River for the primary benefit of navigation on the Mississippi River.

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