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The Shawnee Forest towboat steers down the Ohio River near American Commercial Barge Line's office outside Cairo, Ill. As of June 12, more than 600 barges were waiting to go upstream once water levels dropped. Madelyn Beck/Illinois Newsroom hide caption

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Madelyn Beck/Illinois Newsroom

Months Of Flooding On Mississippi River Marooned Midwest Trade

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Mississippi River floodwaters inundate the pavilion and a play area at Harriet Island in St. Paul, Minn., this past March. Jim Mone/AP hide caption

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Jim Mone/AP

Wet, Wild And High: Lakes And Rivers Wreak Havoc Across Midwest, South

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More precipitation fell in the continental U.S. in the 12 months ending in May 2019 than ever recorded. Records go back more than 120 years. Blue areas had more groundwater than usual for May. Orange and red areas had less. NASA Earth Observatory hide caption

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NASA Earth Observatory

The storm surge from Tropical Storm Barry started pushing water into areas around Lake Pontchartrain Friday, as the storm slowly moved toward shore. Here, an SUV travels down Breakwater Drive near the Orleans Marina in New Orleans. The area is behind a flood wall that protects the rest of the city. Matthew Hinton/AP hide caption

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Matthew Hinton/AP

Starr, a female bald eagle, looks over her eaglets in a nest along the Mississippi River in April. She is raising the three eaglets along with her two male partners, Valor I and Valor II. Stewards of Upper Mississippi River Refuge via AP hide caption

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Stewards of Upper Mississippi River Refuge via AP

Mike Stone, left, and Andy Sherman in the pumping station for Hannibal, Mo., during a flood in 1993. The city is protected by a flood wall, and flood managers have built up levees to protect against flooding. But scientists warn those structures are making flooding worse. Cliff Schiappa/AP hide caption

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Cliff Schiappa/AP

Levees Make Mississippi River Floods Worse, But We Keep Building Them

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Flooding can be seen on O'Neal Lane, looking north from I-12 in Baton Rouge, La. Courtesy of the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development hide caption

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Courtesy of the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development

From Morning Edition: Debbie Elliott Describes Flooding, Rescues

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Two cars are submerged in floodwaters in a park in Kimmswick, Mo. Gov. Jay Nixon has declared a state of emergency because of widespread flooding around the state, which has closed many roads. Jeff Roberson/AP hide caption

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Jeff Roberson/AP

A steamboat drifts along the Mississippi River in New Orleans. A group called America's Watershed Initiative says "funding for infrastructure maintenance means that multiple failures may be imminent" for the lower Mississippi River basin. Mario Tama/Getty Images hide caption

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Mario Tama/Getty Images

In the past decade, freshwater and sediment diverted from the nearby Mississippi River have turned what once was an open bay into a thriving wetlands area. Local environmental groups have planted thousands of cypress trees, attempting to create a marsh that will help absorb storms that pass through. Weenta Girmay for WWNO hide caption

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Weenta Girmay for WWNO

In Louisiana, Rebuilding Mother Nature's Storm Protection: A 'Living Coast'

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This is a calculated flood map for the city of St. Louis. Water depth goes from deep (dark blue) to shallow (white, light blue). Floodwater can come from the Illinois, Upper Mississippi and Missouri rivers, as well as from heavy local precipitation. Courtesy of Dag Lohmann/Katrisk hide caption

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Courtesy of Dag Lohmann/Katrisk

Flood Maps Can Get Much Sharper With A Little Supercomputing Oomph

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