Statement: In ‘Sham Process,’ U.S. Corps of Engineers Rushes Approval of Yazoo Pumps

Trump administration agency barely considered over 55,000 comments in opposition to project


Stu Gillespie, Earthjustice, (303) 996-9616

Today, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) hastily released a Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (FSEIS) for a massive drainage project in Mississippi’s South Delta commonly known as the Yazoo Pumps. This project was vetoed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) during the Bush administration due to its unacceptable adverse effects on some of the richest wetland resources in the nation.

This announcement follows mere days after the close of the public comment period on the draft study, which was heavily criticized due to its many flaws. More than 55,000 citizens, scientists, and public interest groups registered their widespread opposition to the incomplete and legally flawed draft proposal, demonstrating an appalling breach of trust by a federal agency to expedite a sham process driven by politics rather than due public process and respect for bedrock environmental laws.

Earthjustice is representing Audubon Mississippi, American Rivers, Healthy Gulf, and Mississippi Sierra Club in challenging the project.

“The Corps’ headlong rush forward demonstrates a blatant, calculated attempt to steamroll the rule of law, ignore science, and disregard public comments and concerns,” said Stu Gillespie, Earthjustice attorney. “This sham process is a disservice to the public and agency itself, which has failed to learn from its errors and instead forced this unlawful project through before the end of the Trump administration.”

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