Pelicans along Big Sunflower | Photo by Stephen Kirkpatrick
Pelicans along Big Sunflower | Photo by Stephen Kirkpatrick

#3: Big Sunflower River, MS

Threat: Wetland destruction

Previously vetoed water pumping project in the works again

Big Sunflower | Photo by John Ruskey

Canoeing on Big Sunflower

The Big Sunflower River is home to abundant wetlands and habitats that support over 450 species of birds, fish and wildlife. This special place is threatened by a harmful project known as the Yazoo Backwater Pumps that would damage up to 200,000 acres of nationally significant wetlands. In 2008, the Bush administration’s Environmental Protection Agency acknowledged the severe damage the project would cause and vetoed it under authority of the Clean Water Act. However, project supporters have renewed their calls to override the veto and immediately begin construction. Instead of reviving this costly and damaging boondoggle, EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers should prioritize immediate flood relief and smart safeguards for local communities, while conserving vital wetlands that provide natural flood protection.

American Rivers appreciates the collaboration and efforts of our partners:

  • Audubon Mississippi
  • Gulf Restoration Network
  • Mississippi Sierra Club