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Manitoba appealing U.S. approval of North Dakota water diversion plan

The $244-million water diversion project would transfer water from the Missouri River to northwestern North Dakota, where rivers could carry disease and invasive species into Manitoba


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WINNIPEG—The Manitoba government is appealing a U.S. court ruling that could lead to a controversial water-diversion project going ahead.

Sustainable Development Minister Rochelle Squires says the Northwest Area Water Supply project could bring harmful or invasive plants and animals into Manitoba waters.

Squires says the biggest concern is whirling disease, which can be fatal to many fish species.

The $244-million project would transfer water from the Missouri River to northwestern North Dakota, where rivers flow into Manitoba.

Manitoba and Missouri have fought the project for more than a decade, but a U.S. federal judge ruled in August the project follows U.S. environmental laws.

A court date has not been set for Manitoba’s appeal.

“We did file an appeal and are hoping to just ensure that the environment and our environmental landscape is given top consideration,” Squires said Thursday.

“Ultimately, we don’t want the water to flow into the (Red River) basin and we’re taking measures to ensure that our waterways are kept as pure as possible.”


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