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U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
St. Paul District
Programs & Project Management
180 5th St. E., Suite 700
St. Paul MN 55101

(651) 290-5755.


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Related Fact Sheet Information Paper

Posted 9/25/2017

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Updated March 2018

Description and Scope

Unprecedented flooding in the Souris River Basin in 2011 has focused attention on review of the water control structure operating plan during flood events. Interests in the basin, particularly in North Dakota, have asked that additional flood protection measures be evaluated, above and beyond what is currently provided under the international agreement. The information gathered will help inform the state of North Dakota on their current flood risk and will be shared with international basin partners.

The study area will include the entire Souris River Basin to its confluence with the Assiniboine River and will encompass the key water control reservoirs: Rafferty, Alameda, Boundary and Lake Darling. The study will look at the geographical limits of the basin in the provinces of Saskatchewan and Manitoba and the state of North Dakota.

Investigating and evaluating water supply and flood control options requires a thorough understanding of the water resources. Also needed is knowledge of the hydrological and hydraulic processes of the Souris River Basin under the current climate regime and climate change. Computer models will be required to simulate various water supply and flood control options, and methods will be developed to evaluate the effects that these options will have on resource groups in the Souris River Basin. Efforts will be made to ensure coordination and compatibility with ongoing undertakings of various agencies who are conducting investigations that will complement this effort.


On September 8, 2017 a Project Partnership Agreement was executed between the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the non-federal sponsor, the North Dakota State Water Commission. 

This project supports an interagency and international study board with members from the Corps, Hydrological and Meteorological Services of Canada‎, Environment Climate Change Canada, Water Security Agency Saskatchewan, Water Science and Management Conservation and Water Stewardship of Manitoba, ‎Boundary Waters Engineering Unit, National Hydrological Service, U.S. Geological Survey, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the International Joint Commission.

The study board drafted a comprehensive work plan, which was presented at a public meeting on February 20, 2018.  A public comment period was held from February 12 through March 12, 2018.  The study board is in the process of updating models and hydrographic curves and will finalize the comprehensive work plan by the end of fiscal year 2019.


The study was authorized by Section 22 of the Water Resources Development Act of 1974 (Public Law 93‒251), as amended.  The study was conducted under the Corps’ Planning Assistance to States program, following the 50-50 cost share formula with the non-federal sponsor.


The total study cost is $600,000 ($300,000 federal/ $300,000 non-federal).  The North Dakota State Water Commission is providing their cost share in $50,000 cash and $250,000 work-in-kind.

flood risk management North Dakota Planning Assistance to States Souris River Souris River Basin St. Paul District U.S. Army Corps of Engineers