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North Dakota City Removes Trees to Prevent Floods

Army Corps of Engineers cuts down trees in Jamestown to save levees.

by / July 27, 2009
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Heavy rains in April threatened levees and the city of Jamestown, N.D. Since then, the Army Corps of Engineers has embarked on a nationwide quest to cut down every tree within 15 feet of a levee. The rationale is that the roots of nearby trees weaken levees.

The agency wants to eliminate trees along more than 100,000 miles of levees, which has drawn the ire of environmentalists and others who say it's unnecessary and that the trees can actually help stabilize the levees.

Photo by Michael Raphael/FEMA