Posted: Jan 10, 2012 2:34 PM
Source: Associated Press
Associated Press- The U.S. economy faces losing billions of dollars in trade unless the Army Corps of Engineers' budget for dredging the Mississippi River is not increased to prevent the river from silting in.
That's according to a new study commissioned by businesses that rely on the river.
Every year, the corps keeps the channel open with dredges that remove mud and allow ships to get to the Port of New Orleans.
But in the last year, the corps has seen its dredging budget cut by about $45 million.
The new study warns that if the river silts in to the point where severe restrictions are imposed on the amount of cargo ships can carry there would be a loss of $5.5 billion in exports and $3.7 billion in imports.