First, understanding sedimentary processes, and the actions that affect those processes, are increasingly important for Missouri River management. Although ongoing studies are being conducted, there is a need to strengthen and synchronize historical and contemporary databases, while at the same time make management decisions under uncertain conditions. This report’s findings and recommendations thus frequently stress the need for improved monitoring and data collection, more rigorous interpretation, and analysis and openness to learning over time even while decisions are made with limited understanding of the system. Second, the committee was attentive to the roles and responsibilities of technical analysts to inform, but not dictate, decisions made in the public choice process. The report’s final chapter (7) offers perspectives on the role of the science community in future policy decisions on river management.
The committee acknowledges the National Research Council and its staff from the Water Science and Technology Board (WSTB) for their steadfast efforts in organizing the committee’s activities during and between meetings throughout the study process. Their assistance has been tireless and always cheerfully given. In particular, we appreciate the efforts of our study director, Jeffrey Jacobs, to debate and challenge the arguments being made, then carefully edit the committee’s numerous and extensive draft reports. WSTB senior program associate Anita Hall expertly attended to administrative, logistics, and financial details of our meetings and assisted with editorial and related publications responsibilities.
We are grateful to the many individuals who shared their time and insights with this committee. Appendix A lists invited guest speakers at the committee’s open, public meetings. The views of our invited speakers were complemented nicely by literally dozens of interested and active citizens who offered their comments during our public comment sessions. Our committee benefitted greatly in hearing from all of our speakers, each of whom had unique points of view and backgrounds that were important in contributing to our collective understanding of today’s important scientific and public policy issues along the Missouri River.
This report was reviewed in draft form by individuals chosen for their diverse perspectives and technical expertise in accordance with the procedures approved by the NRC’s Report Review Committee. The purpose of this independent review is to provide candid and critical comments that will assist the NRC in making its published report as sound as possible, and to ensure that the report meets NRC institutional standards for objectivity, evidence, and responsiveness to the study charge. The review comments and draft manuscript remain confidential to protect the integrity of the deliberative process.
We thank the following for their review of this report: Jim Best, University of Illinois; Patrick L. Brezonik, University of Minnesota; Martin W.