U.S. Army Corps to reopen Bonnet Carré Spillway
Photo courtesy of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

The Bonnet Carré Spillway will open once again. 

Due to recent heavy rainfall, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced that the spillway will be opened for “three to four weeks” based on current projections. 

“In the Mississippi Valley Division, our priority is taking care of people,” said Maj. Gen. Toy.  “When we operate the spillway, we do everything we can to help mitigate the impacts. And, the decision to do so is not taken lightly.  By operating the Bonnet Carré Spillway, we can safely pass these high waters and ultimately keep people safe.”

The spillway was opened twice in 2019, sending large amounts of freshwater into the Mississippi Sound, ultimately devastating the marine life populations along with the fishing and tourism industries on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. 

While the spillway was opened in 2019, the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources stated that the oyster mortality on Mississippi harvest reefs was higher than 90% for all reefs except for Pass Marianne.

The introduction of freshwater into the Sound also caused the death of hundreds of dolphins and turtles.

In December 2019, then-Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann filed a lawsuit against the Corps of Engineers on behalf of the state.