Transcript for A New Horizon, segment 11 of 13
The Missouri-Souris Projects Office in Bismarck, North Dakota, has operations and maintenance responsibility for three reservoirs. It also manages four irrigation district contracts. The major focus of the Missouri-Souris Office has been the Garrison Diversion Unit, an extensive project authorized in nineteen sixty-five to provide irrigation and municipal water to a wide area of North Dakota. Construction of Garrison has been intermittent as concerns and controversies arose over possible impacts and projected costs. Canada is concerned about project waters which flow out of the U.S. into Canada. In nineteen eighty-six, Congress reduced the amount of irrigated land in the Garrison Diversion Unit from about a quarter of a million acres to one hundred thirty thousand acres. The first delivery of water occurred in nineteen eighty-eight at the Oakes Test Area, a five thousand acre unit designed to test the effects of irrigation on water quality. Legislation also authorized federal funding for development of municipal and industrial water systems and established a trust fund to acquire, protect, and restore wetlands and wildlife habitat in North Dakota.