Strain warns of dredging problems in the Mississippi River

POSTED: Monday, August 20, 2012 - 5:30pm

UPDATED: Monday, August 20, 2012 - 5:34pm

Louisiana Agriculture and Forestry Commissioner Mike Strain says more money needs to go towards dredging the Mississippi river.

Strain told members of the Press Club right now barges are having big problems getting up and down the river. He says shipping companies pay a tax in order to travel down the river, but only a small percentage of that money actually gets used for dredging.

It's a problem that could end up stranding millions of dollars in grain and other foods at ports.

"They say, ‘We’ll bring in trucks’. It'll take 7,000 trucks. They don't exist,” said Strain.

Strain says drought is causing huge problems for the farm industry, not just along the river and in transport.

He says 73 percent of the U.S. is suffering from drought conditions now, and that could mean higher food prices for us all in the near future. 

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