US Army Corps of Engineers
Northwestern Division Website

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  • Northwestern Division transfers command; Accomplished scholar-soldier takes over largest USACE division

    Brig. Gen. Peter Helmlinger transferred command of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Northwestern Division to Col. Geoff Van Epps today in a ceremony at Bonneville Dam on the Columbia River. Van Epps comes to the Northwestern Division from the Office of the Chief of Engineers in Washington, D.C., where he served as director of the Pentagon office of the Chief of Engineers, Lt. Gen. Scott Spellmon. “I’m very pleased to be included in the story of this unit along with all its stellar employees, past and present,” said Van Epps. “Together, we’ll continue to develop our people, collaborate with our partners, and deliver the program for our country and corps.”
  • USACE implements drought conservation measures

    Water conservation measures were enacted for the second half of the navigation flow support season based on the July 1 Missouri River Mainstem Reservoir System storage, per the guidelines outlined in the Master Manual. Very dry conditions continue to impact the upper Missouri River Basin above Sioux City, IA (upper Basin) despite recent heavy rainfall in the lower Basin. As a result of the low precipitation and widespread drought conditions, June runoff in the upper Basin was 52% of average. The updated 2021 upper Basin runoff forecast is 15.6 million acre-feet (MAF), 60% of average. If realized, this runoff amount would be the 10th driest year in the upper Basin since 1898. System storage on July 1 was 55.2 MAF, 0.9 MAF below the base of the Annual Flood Control and Multiple Use Zone. System storage is expected to decline further into the Carryover Multiple Use Zone during the remainder of 2021.
  • Missouri River navigation support; full-length season, reduced service levels

    The Missouri River Water Management Division will reduce navigation flow support beginning today for the second half of the navigation flow support season.  “We continue to monitor conditions throughout the basin and make adjustments as necessary. We will provide a full update for key stakeholders and the media on our regular July 8 call,” said John Remus, chief of the Missouri River Water Management Division. 
  • Kansas City District holds change of command ceremony

    In historic military tradition, command of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Kansas City District transferred today from Col. William C. Hannan, Jr., to Col. Travis J. Rayfield. In a ceremony at the Memorial Hall Kansas City, Kan., Rayfield received the traditional guidon from Hannan through Brig. Gen. Peter Helmlinger, the commander of the Northwestern Division, thus assuming command of the district.
  • Upper basin runoff forecast continues to be below average

    After our June communication materials were sent, we received a few calls from the public seeking clarification on planned releases from Gavins Point Dam. The press release has been updated to highlight this information. Below-average precipitation and dry soil conditions persist in the upper Missouri River Basin above Sioux City, IA (upper Basin). The updated 2021 upper Basin runoff forecast is 17.9 million acre-feet (MAF), 69% of average. If realized, this runoff amount would be in the 22nd driest year in the upper Basin since 1898.
  • Spring Spill begins facilitating fish passage at Snake and Columbia river dams

    Federal water managers have begun the annual spill of water past hydroelectric dams on the Columbia and Snake rivers to help juvenile salmon and steelhead migrate to the ocean this spring. The spill began April 3 on the lower Snake River and April 10 on the lower Columbia River. Spill for juvenile fish passage helps reduce the proportion of juvenile fish that pass dams through the turbines and helps reduce passage delay at each dam, thereby shortening their travel time through the Snake and Columbia rivers.