Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works visits Dubuque to celebrate 25th Anniversary of the Environmental Management Program

Published Oct. 23, 2011

Rock Island, Ill. -- (Sept. 23, 2011) The media is invited to join the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works, the Honorable Jo-Ellen Darcy, at Eagle Point Park in Dubuque, Iowa, Thursday, Sept. 29 at 9 a.m. to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the Upper Mississippi River Restoration-Environmental Management Program (UMRR-EMP).

The event, which also celebrates 100,000 acres of restored river ecosystem, features speakers from the wide variety of organizations which work hand-in-hand with the Army Corps of Engineers to implement the UMRR-EMP across the five river basin states of Iowa, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Missouri.  Representatives from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the U.S. Geological Service, the Upper Mississippi River Basin Association and many others join Ms. Darcy and the Army Corps of Engineers to mark the momentous occasion.

The ceremony at Eagle Point Park concludes at approximately 9:45 a.m.  From there, the celebration moves to Sunfish Lake located on the Wisconsin side of the river.  Media are invited to attend this portion of the celebration as well.  A ribbon cutting ceremony will be performed on Sunfish Lake signifying the restoration of an ecosystem.

The UMRR-EMP was authorized as part of the Water Resources Development Act of 1986.  Congress has recognized the Upper Mississippi River as a “nationally significant ecosystem and a nationally significant commercial navigation system.”  The UMRR-EMP is the first national program to combine ecosystem restoration with scientific monitoring and research efforts on a large river system.  Since its authorization in 1986, UMRR-EMP has established a record of significant accomplishments through habitat rehabilitation and long term resource monitoring which have led to vast improvements to the health of the river as well as a substantially enhanced understanding of the river system.

As the federal agency authorized to implement the UMRR-EMP, the Corps of Engineers is accountable for the management and execution of the program.  However, UMRR-EMP is a true partnership with interagency collaboration being a necessity to carry out the intended purpose of the program.  Celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the program commemorates not only its accomplishments but the partnerships that have been so integral to the success of the UMRR-EMP.

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NOTE:  This event is not open to the public.

Release no. 9/23/2011