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NFC: Fw: URGENT: Save the Mattaponi River, VA; Army Corps' decision
TAKE ACTION: YOUR LETTERS ARE NEEDED BEFORE FRIDAY MAY 4, 2001.
Letters are needed now to support the US Army Corps of Engineers'
recommended Record of Decision to deny a permit for the King William
Reservoir. The deadline for public comments is May 4, 2001. Only
those who submit comments during this period will be eligible to
write comments in the next comment period.
TAKE ACTION! To submit a letter, visit
submit your own personalized letter to: Colonel Allan B. Carroll,
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Norfolk District 803 Front Street,
Norfolk, VA 23510-1096, fax: 757-441-7115, or e-mail:
Allan.B.Carroll at usace_army.mil by FRIDAY MAY 4th, 2001.
The City of Newport News, VA wants to build a reservoir on Cohoke
Creek in King William County that would destroy more than 400 acres
of forested wetlands and divert up to 75 million gallons of water per
day from the Mattaponi River.
The project would also harm the Mattaponi American Indian Tribe,
which opposes the reservoir. The Alliance to Save the Mattaponi
believes this destructive project should not be built. On March 20,
2001, the Army Corps of Engineers issued a recommended Record of
Decision denying Newport News a permit for reservoir. Virginia
politicians and real estate developers are pressing hard to overturn
the Corps recommendation. Here is why the reservoir should not be
THE WATER IS NOT NEEDED.
* The water is not needed. The worst that will happen is that
Newport News would need to limit lawn watering and car washing in the
event of a severe drought.
* Future water requirements of Newport News and the Peninsula can
be met through existing sources, conservation and less expensive and
less destructive alternatives.
THE MATTAPONI AMERICAN INDIAN TRIBE WOULD BE IRREPARABLY HARMED.
* Fishing for shad is not only necessary for subsistence, but
also an integral part of the Mattaponi Indian culture, practiced
continuously for over 15,000 years along the banks of the river,
which bears their name. By diverting large quantities of fresh water
from the tidal river, salt water from the Chesapeake Bay will move
upstream, endangering the shad spawning grounds and the last of the
Mattaponi living culture.
* The reservoir would fall within a three mile buffer zone,
violating the 1677 treaty, and flood over 100 documented
archaeological sites, as well as land that is sacred to the Mattaponi
THE DAMAGE TO THE ENVIRONMENT CANNOT BE MITIGATED.
* The King William Reservoir would destroy 1,526 acres of a
highly diverse upland/wetland system including more than 400 acres of
* The reservoir would destroy animal habitat including a 17-nest
great blue heron rookery and disturb two federally listed threatened
plant species, the sensitive joint vetch and the small whorled
* The massive water withdrawals from the Mattaponi River may
change the river's salinity, threatening fish like shad and the
river's basic ecology.
* The plan submitted by Newport News would not fully mitigate
these losses and falls far short of the 2 to 1 replacement acreage
goal for wetlands mitigation.
HOW YOU CAN HELP!
1) Take action at http://www.amrivers.org/takeaction/default.htm or
use this fact sheet to email or fax the Corps of Engineers (unless
you can mail a letter to be received by the deadline). The deadline
for comments is May 4, 2001. Please use the fact sheet to write a
letter to the Corps or simply submit the following letter, although
personalized letters are appreciated. Submit to:
Colonel Allan B. Carroll, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Norfolk
District 803 Front Street, Norfolk, VA 23510-1096, fax: 757-441-7115,
or e-mail: Allan.B.Carroll at usace_army.mil by FRIDAY MAY 4th, 2001.
2) For more information, go to http://www.savethemattaponi.org or
contact Pat DeZern (804-225-9113) with the Sierra Club or Ginette
Smith (804-769-4226) with the Alliance to Save the Mattaponi or e-
mail us at savethemattaponi at prodigy_net . The Army Corps of
Engineers' Record of Decision and related documents may be seen on
the Corps website at http://www.nao.usace.army.mil/Regulatory/PN/KWR-
Thank you robertrice at juno_com for helping to protect and
restore America's rivers.
To contact American Rivers, send an email to Rebecca
Sherman at outreach at amrivers_org or call 202-347-7550.
Join the nation's online river community at
www.americanrivers.org for free online resources, toolkits,
and ways to unite with other activists on your important
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