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Corps of Engineers "Loses" 22 Billion Gallons of Water

If you stop for a second and think about this story, it's pretty amusing.

Ga. gov. to sue Army Corps of Engineers

ATLANTA (AP) -- Worried that a drought could be looming, Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue said Tuesday the state will sue the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for draining excessive amounts of water from the state's reservoirs.

Water from Georgia is being sent downstream to Florida to protect endangered sturgeon and mussels. Perdue said the state would seek a temporary restraining order Wednesday to limit the amount of water the Corps could take from lakes along the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint River system.

The Corps acknowledged over the weekend that a faulty gauge at Lake Lanier had allowed 22 billion gallons of water to be released by mistake. Carol Couch, director of Georgia's Environmental Protection Division, said the amount of water mistakenly drained would have been enough to support the city of Atlanta for 118 days.

The Corps effectively LOST 22 Billion gallons of water. The people of Atlanta should feel lucky, at least they didn't get in in their living rooms like the Corps did in New Orleans.

When questioned, the Corps spokesman had a classic Corps' reply:

Pat Robbins, spokesman for the Corps of Engineers' Mobile District, said he could not comment. "We have not seen or heard anything about this," Robbins said.

They lost 22 BILLION gallons water and this guy has no idea they even did it.

"Water? What water? Are we missing some water?"


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Comments (12)

Water water everywhere, but... (Below threshold)

Water water everywhere, but not a drop to drink.

If they stop releasing wate... (Below threshold)

If they stop releasing water they'd get sued by the people downstream. The sturgeon and mussles in Florida might die.

Who says it's Georgia's water anyhow? If they didn't have a dam, none of it would stay.

Just file a 970 stroke thir... (Below threshold)

Just file a 970 stroke thirteen and write in 'water' where it says 'machine gun'.

>Just file a 970 stroke thi... (Below threshold)

>Just file a 970 stroke thirteen and write in 'water' where it says 'machine gun'.

I thought that was for an ice cream maker???

Ya never hear about the SEA... (Below threshold)
The Listkeeper:

Ya never hear about the SEABEES pulling crap like this...

Synova at June 20, 2006 11:... (Below threshold)

Synova at June 20, 2006 11:11 PM

Who says it's Georgia's water anyhow? If they didn't have a dam, none of it would stay.
Who says it's Georgia's air anyhow? What right do we have to breathe anyway?

What a stupid statement. Georgia has no natural lakes, period. Does that mean that all should be drained and Georgia should dry up?

No, the problem is the arrogance of the Corps. This was a big story here in Atlanta yesterday. Several long time residents of Lake Lanier have been trying to warn the Corps that their lake levels, announced every day, were wrong, and had been wrong for several months. One man called in to Neal Boortz and said that he had talked to the head man over Lake Lanier at least 5 times, and each time he was told that the levels were accurate, even going to the point of beligerence to deny that the readings were wrong.

Then yesterday morning, they reported that the gauge was in fact miscalibrated. Oops, the lake is 2 feet lower than we thought. Then, yesterday afternoon, they said it was 5 feet lower, not 2. They had been releasing 420,000,000 more gallons per day than normal because they thought the water level was excessive for the time of year, and needed to be dropped to handle runoff. Nobody bothered to look at the shoreline and see the low levels.

420M gallons is what the entire Metro Atlanta area [4.7M] people use daily, not just the city of Atlanta. Georgia is in a mild drought cycle now. The purpose of the lake was conservation and flood control. The arrogance of the Corps and their failure to listen and manage the resources they were charged with has lead to this problem.

Another part of government ... (Below threshold)

Another part of government with a liquidity problem.


They didn't lose it. I dran... (Below threshold)

They didn't lose it. I drank it all.

Now, if you'll excuse me...

Holy mackerel! That's more... (Below threshold)

Holy mackerel! That's more than FIVE TIMES as much water as Al Gore wasted!

"The single most exciting thing you encounter in government is competence, because it's so rare." --Daniel Patrick Moynihan

@wave_man, Thanks for some ... (Below threshold)

@wave_man, Thanks for some quantitative remarks. Is 22 Billion (22,000Million) a big number? It depends what you compare it to. If you divide it by the 420 Million gallons/day quoted, that's a 52-day supply.

dchamil, Who knows w... (Below threshold)

Who knows what the truth is? The story continues to change, as it seems the Corps has been engaging in a huge case of CYA. Tonight, the local FOX affiliate reported that the shoreline has receded 100' in some areas. And nobody at the Corps noticed? They continued to report near normal lake levels and deny there was a problem when confronted. Don't they even look out the window, drive around the shore, or get in a boat sometimes on a lake they control? Talk about De De Dee.

They have has lots of success in water management in the past. But their failures are glaring. Remember the levee failures in the Midwest, I believe it was in the late 80s? New Orleans last year? Now this- this is just incompetent. A drought was just declared in Georgia today. The last one lasted 3 years. And the Corps has already let a large supply of the reserve out. Good going.

Being fairly familiar with ... (Below threshold)
Water Weinnie:

Being fairly familiar with water management, the primary problem with the Corps' handling of this situation has more to do with the culture within the Corps than with ignorance. However, both are intolerable.

The Corps has adopted a "top down" management system that discourages reporting information from the people who really know what's going on. I'm sure that someone in the field or in water management with the Corps knew that something was wrong but were either afraid or discouraged to report it.

Shame is on the Corps for such a failure.






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