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Environment & Energy Report

With Virus Raging, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Preps for Floods

April 7, 2020, 9:00 AM

Spring rains were already swelling the Mississippi River, threatening floods along a 700-mile stretch between St. Louis and Baton Rouge, Louisiana, when the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers showed up at a convention center in Manhattan in late-March. The Army Corps is responsible for most of the country’s disaster-response infrastructure. Primarily, that means keeping the Mississippi at bay. In this case, however, it meant transforming the Javits Center into a 1,000-bed field hospital for coronavirus patients overflowing New York City’s hospitals.

The coinciding threats of flood season and Covid-19 have already put a strain on the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which works closely with the Corps and...

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