U.S. plans to award $221 mln to address Mississippi flooding risks

A view shows a flooded area next to a road near Pearl River following water discharges from Barnett Reservoir over the weekend, in Ridgeland, Mississippi, U.S. in this screen grab taken from a video August 29, 2022. REUTERS TV/via REUTERS

WASHINGTON, Oct 3 (Reuters) - The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said on Monday it will spend almost $800 million to address flood mitigation, coastal storm damage protection and address supply chain resilience.

About $221 million will address flooding for the Pearl River in Jackson, Mississippi, it said in a statement.

The plan, funded by the $1 trillion infrastructure bill Congress passed in November 2021, supports construction of 31 additional projects and 11 previously announced projects.

The Pearl River funding for a comprehensive flood damage reduction plan is subject to a review of environmental and other criteria. In August, U.S. President Joe Biden declared a state of emergency when Jackson, Mississippi, went without reliable drinking water after pumps at the main water treatment plant failed.

The city linked the failure to complications from the flooding of the Pearl River. A boil water advisory was lifted on Sept. 15.

White House Infrastructure Implementation Coordinator Mitch Landrieu said in a statement to Reuters that funding will be used to ensure "communities across the country can withstand the effects of climate change and extreme weather for decades to come."

The administration plans more than $250 million in additional funding for the Soo Locks replacement project in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, which is contingent upon passage of separate water resources legislation.

Michigan lawmakers have pushed for years to get federal funding for a new $1.3 billion lock to handle larger vessels and prevent a potential failure of the locks.

It also includes $60.6 million for storm-ravaged Rio Guayanilla, Puerto Rico, to assist with flood damage reduction, and $46 million to address flooding risks in southwest Louisiana.

About $2 million will be used to complete preconstruction engineering and design phases for the eventual replacement of two bridges across the Cape Cod canal in Massachusetts, a project costing more than $1 billion.

Reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by Richard Chang

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