Omaha, Neb.—The Missouri River Recovery Implementation Committee (MRRIC) celebrated its five-year anniversary at the 23rd meeting in Omaha, Neb., November 5–7. MRRIC reached final consensus for a recommendation to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) regarding communication and outreach practices when acquiring and managing lands purchased for endangered species habitat creation. Additionally, the committee tentatively approved an amendment to its charter to add the Osage Nation as a MRRIC member, with final approval expected at the February 2014 meeting.
The Independent Science Advisory Panel (ISAP) provided advice on strategies for developing a successful adaptive management plan that will track progress on actions implemented to help recover three species on the threatened and endangered species list: the pallid sturgeon, least tern and piping plover. The ISAP also provided evaluations of efforts undertaken by the committee to develop several strategies designed to guide species recovery efforts.
Committee members began discussing the key social and human factors as outlined in the congressionally authorized purposes of the Missouri River, such as irrigation, navigation, flood control and recreation, and how these activities are influenced in the Corps’ management of the river. These discussions will be considered as the Corps develops a management plan to assist in the recovery of the three listed species.
The committee affirmed their desire for Dr. Michael Mac to continue as the Chair and Franklyn Pogge of Kansas City, Mo., as the Vice-Chair for calendar year 2014.
MRRIC comprises stakeholders and representatives of Tribal and state governments, as well as federal agencies throughout the Missouri River Basin. The committee advises the federal agencies on managing the Missouri River system and on promoting recovery of the endangered pallid sturgeon and least tern, and the threatened piping plover.
The committee meets quarterly at different locations throughout the Missouri River Basin. The next MRRIC meeting will be February 11-13th in the greater Kansas City area. For more information on MRRIC, please contact Dr. Michael Mac, Committee Chair, at email@example.com. Additional links related to the Missouri River recovery efforts are: www.mrric.org and www.moriverrecovery.org.
MRRIC was authorized by Congress in the 2007 Water Resources Development Act and was established in 2008 by the Assistant Secretary of the Army (Civil Works). Its duties include providing recommendations to the Secretary of the Army and other federal, state, and Tribal governments on efforts to recover Endangered Species Act (ESA)-listed species, mitigate habitat loss, and restore the ecosystem to protect other native species. MRRIC is supported by the U.S. Institute for Environmental Conflict Resolution and RESOLVE, an independent dispute resolution non-profit organization, and federal agency staff.