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Dam and Lock Renovation Not Funded in 2018 Budget Proposal

July 13, 2017 (EIRNS)—The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is now at work building one replacement lock on the Monongahela River at Charleroi, Pennsylvania. This is the second major phase of a renovation project that was originally scheduled for completion in 2004. The structures in question are from 83 to 110 years old.

The work underway in Charleroi is funded under the Army Corps’ Fiscal Year 2017 budget, but no further work has been provided for in FY 2018. This means an undetermined delay in completing the project by removing a 110-year-old dam and replacing an 85-year-old one.

Failure of the system could cause a loss in dollar terms of $200 million per year. Barge transport of coal, the major commodity shipped on the Monongahela, is one-half the cost of rail and one-tenth the cost of truck transport.