Missouri river flooding and impacts on Ft. Calhoun and Cooper Nuke plants

Yesterday I wrote about Fort Calhoun nuclear power plant in Nebraska, located alongside the flooding Missouri River. At the end of the blog entry I mentioned Cooper Nuclear plant, also in danger. Today the news got a bit worse.

St. Louis Today reports that Monday Brig. Gen. John McMahon, commander of the [Army] corps’ Northwest Division, will travel to Jefferson City from Portland to field some of those concerns, Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer, R-St. Elizabeth said yesterday.” What concerns, you wonder? Well, that “flooding along the Missouri River might have been prevented with better planning by the Army Corps of Engineers.”

The flooding is impacting several nuclear power plants, one of which (Cooper) came within inches of being flooded today, and is impacting several dams also. CBS St. Louis called it the “Summer of Suspense” because it won’t be over until late August. CBS wrote:

“Officials on Tuesday will increase releases from five of the river’s dams to 150,000 cubic feet of water per second __ more than twice the previous record releases. As a result, the river will rise 5 to 7 feet above flood stage in most of Nebraska and Iowa before continuing into Missouri, where it may rise 10 feet above flood stage in several places and flow over the top of at least 11 rural levees. The record releases from the dams are expected to continue into August, so the river will remain high all summer, interfering with highway and rail traffic in the region. Parts of Interstate 29 have already been closed, and Union Pacific was re-routing some trains around Omaha. Places in most danger of flooding include the small Iowa towns of Hamburg, Blencoe and Pacific Junction; the Nebraska communities of South Sioux City, Rulo and Plattsmouth; and St. Joseph in Missouri. “I think there’s a 50 percent chance it’s going to be ugly. And there’s a 50 percent chance we’re going to squeak by,” said James Gerweck, the emergency manager in southeast Nebraska’s Richardson County.”

“Record-breaking rains and heavy snow in the basin’s western reaches have filled upstream impoundments to near capacity, forcing the corps to evacuate the waters with dam releases more than double any in history. The record volumes of water that are working their way to the confluence with the Mississippi are scheduled to last into August. Corps officials acknowledged over the weekend that they are failing to keep up despite the releases. Continuing snowmelt and rain is complicating matters and corps officials said on Friday that they are moving more water from two upstream reservoirs into the Fort Randall impoundment in South Dakota, where space had been kept open. More heavy rains are forecast in coming days, prompting Army engineers to warn on Saturday that if weather continues to deteriorate, they will lose their ability to make adjustments between dams and may need to increase releases from Fort Randall and Gavins Point dams.”

The problem is that as water is released upriver the same downriver, which are all flooded, also have to release water. On Pacifica Radio Network, Arnie Gunderson who is a nuclear consultant for Fairewinds Associates, was interviewed about the situation. He said, “sandbags and nuclear power plant really don’t belong in the same sentence and now we are seeing them put sandbags up to reinforce against the flood. … All of the dams upstream are full, they are all opening up their water and letting it cascade down to the next dam and opening up their water and letting it cascade down to the next dam and so on. They were designed for a flood not much worse than this, or else it is going to breach the walls. My concern is, what if a dam breaks? That would be the equivalent to the Fukushima tsunami.”

The CBS St. Louis map above of the river basin shows the Missouri River and also the dams from the beginning to the end. Ft. Calhoun and Cooper plants are in Nebraska, Ft. Calhoun just north of Omaha and Cooper near the southern end toward Auburn and Rock Port.

So what we have now, without things getting worse (and I hope they don’t) is a multi-state flood that is going to last multi-months. Crop land is flowing away, commerce has been interrupted and/or stopped,  railroads have been re-routed, homes destroyed, power plants taken off-line, and businesses sunk. Record upon record of water releases have already been made. We can’t afford to recover from this. If it gets worse, and the flooding IS expected to continue and the plants ARE just inches away from inundation, then things will get exponentially worse. 

Here is a UK Daily Mail summary from a few minutes ago. Yes, I often turn to the international media to find out what is going on next door. As usual, the Daily Mail has stupendous photos.

Raging Missouri River inches from engulfing nuclear power plant as record floods force hundreds of residents to flee their homes

  • Nuclear plant inches from being totally flooded
  • Damage would be likely to cause energy prices to soar
  • Six to 12 inches of heavy rainfall over the last few weeks
  • Record floods hit 44.4 feet, topping 44.3 feet record set in 1993
  • Levees fail to stem surge of water from rain and melting snow
  • Flooding expected to continue until August
  • Residents begin burning wood to avoid it becoming flood debris
  • Meanwhile, engineers close the Bonnet Carre Spillway near New Orleans

“The National Weather Service said that the six to 12 inches of rainfall in the upper Missouri basin in the past few weeks is nearly a normal year’s worth of rain, while runoff from the mountain snowpack is 140 per cent of average levels.”

These records, crumbling all over the world in ‘natural disaster’ after ‘natural disaster’ are NOT coincidence. The wonderful thing is that we can pray. If you have a relationship with Jesus, and that is what being a Christian means, then you can pray for safety of the people there, or for the nuke plants’ safe operation, or for the rapture. Whatever you would like to pray for, you can pray. He gives you that right as His child, and He has promised to listen.

If you do not know Jesus, then you can pray to Him for forgiveness of your sins. That is all that is preventing Him from calling you one of His own. If you recognize your unrighteousness in the face of a Holy God then pray to Him for forgiveness. He will forgive you, and you will be cleansed from unrighteousness because He has already sacrificed Himself for your sins and took your punishment.

Do not delay. If you wonder why these things keep happening in the world and why things are not getting better, this is why. It is the end of time, and He is going to call His bride to Him soon. Don’t miss the biggest event in the history of the Church!
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