Decision on dam for Buffalo good news 4 scenic Ozarks river


Mar 11, 2001
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May 10, 2002

Charlie Farmer, Springfield News Leader

Decision on dam for Buffalo good news for scenic Ozarks river

As reported by the News-Leader, the controversial dam that never was is just that. Nothing.

The Army Corps of Engineers said the proposed dam on Bear Creek, a tributary of the Buffalo River, can’t be built now and could be delayed until at least 2005, the newspaper reported in Wednesday’s edition.

In the beginning, the Corps nixed the proposed dam, in part because of the river’s beauty and adjacent scenery.

Even greater is the precious bounty of fish and wildlife that abounds where the dam would be built. And there’s an alternate source of water for Searcy County that would be a better choice than ripping up nature’s beauty and killing fish in the process.

Then the Corps did an amazing flip-flop a few months later as it often does when politics, money and bulldozers are ready smoking on the battle line.

All of a sudden the Corps lusted for the heady smell of blasting powder and the removal of anything green.

Seven environmental groups sued, alleging the Corps illegally approved plans for the dam without the U.S. Secretary of the Interior’s approval. The National Park Service opposed the dam.

The suit alleges the Corps violated the Clean Water Act when it granted the dam permit even though a less environmentally intrusive alternative exists, the newspaper reported. The Corps illegally issued the permit without the approval of the interior secretary and violated the National Environmental Policy Act by issuing the permit without conducting a complete environmental impact study.

How in the world can anybody trust the Army Corps of Engineers to save pristine rivers, fish and wildlife habitats for years to come. The answer? You can’t without help!

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