Mission Statement for Lower Mississippi River Sub-basin Committee on Gulf Hypoxia
The Lower Mississippi River Sub-basin Committee on Gulf Hypoxia is being formed as part of the Action Plan for Reducing, Mitigating, and Controlling Hypoxia in the Northern Gulf of Mexico.* The states of Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, and Tennessee signed onto the Action Plan in October 2000.
The LMR Sub-basin Committee will establish a process of communication and coordination aimed at the following efforts:
- Supporting implementation of the Action Plan throughout the Mississippi River Basin, and working with other states to ensure federal funding for implementation;
- Coordinating implementation of the Action Plan in the lower river basin.
Under 2), states will work in a cooperative manner to:
- compile information on nitrate/nutrient loading to the Mississippi and Atchafalaya River basins, and assess the impacts of federal and state programs aimed at reducing nitrate/nutrient loading;
- coordinate interstate watershed programs that can improve water quality and reduce nutrient loading in the Lower Mississippi River sub-basin and connected smaller watersheds;
- promote and coordinate complimentary regional and state efforts to improve water quality, such as the Lower Mississippi Valley Initiative (LMVI), the Lower Mississippi River Conservation Committee, the Gulf of Mexico Program Nutrient Enrichment Focus team, and others.
- Establish an open process in which interested stakeholders, along
with partner agencies and universities, can participate, and support
water quality/nutrient reduction programs initiated by those participants.
* The Action Plan for Reducing, Mitigating, and Controlling
Hypoxia in the Northern Gulf of Mexico calls for “States and Tribes
in the [Mississippi River] Basin, in consultation with the Task Force,
[to] establish sub-basin committees to coordinate implementation of the
Action Plan by major sub-basins, including coordination among smaller
watersheds, Tribes, and States in each of those sub-basins.”
The Plan also states that “States, Tribes, and Federal agencies with the MR/AR Basin, using available data and tools, local partnerships, and coordination through sub-basin committees, will develop strategies for nutrient reduction. These strategies will include setting reduction targets for nitrogen losses to surface waters, establishing a baseline of existing efforts for nutrient management, identifying opportunities to restore floodplain wetlands…along and adjacent to the [Mississippi River], detailing needs for additional assistance to meet their goals, and promoting additional funding.”