Collaboration on flood impact needs creativity, long-lasting solutions

Letters to the Editor


To the editor:

Since retiring from teaching about 20 years ago, I’ve volunteered to help conserve natural resources and encourage sound management of the watersheds in our region.

Over the years, I’ve observed many devastating flooding events and missed opportunities for flood-resilient recovery. Flooding has many negative impacts on human infrastructure. Wastewater plants fail and discharge untreated sewage. Public water systems stop working. Other systems deal with power outages, water main breaks and flooded wells.

In northwest Missouri, after the flooding of 2019, the Atchison County Levee District, with U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, The Nature Conservancy and other partners, got creative with a long-lasting solution — a levee setback. This will give the river more room to flow, reduce the chances of severe flooding, provide better protection to the community and restore the flood plain.

As the climate continues to change, we need to better prepare our communities up and down the river. I hope to see more innovation and collaboration in the flood plains, including here in the Confluence region.

Larry Ruff