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May 8, 2010 1:58 PM by Letitia Walker

River Diversions To Control Spill

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Louisiana and parish officials have

opened six gates through Mississippi River levees to send fresh

water into wetlands and try to keep out oil from the Gulf of Mexico

spill.

In addition, authorities are considering whether the Bohemia

Spillway in lower Plaqeminues Parish might be adjusted to release

even more fresh water.

According to the state Office of Coastal Protection and

Restoration, the six diversion structures are now pouring about

18,900 cubic feet of water per second from the river into the

wetlands of St. Charles, St. Bernard and Plaquemines Parishes.

That's more than 141,000 gallons per second.

Three diversions are on the east side of the river and three on

the west side.

The coastal office says it worked with the state Department of

Transportation and Development opened locks on the east bank in

lower Plaquemines Parish to send fresh water into the Breton Sound

area.

When the Mississippi River gets high, water flows through

culverts along a 12-mile stretch of earthen structures to the

Bohemia Spillway.

Details of how it might be adjusted were unavailable.

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