The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Mississippi Valley Division has formed a task force with federal and state partners to help restore the Mississippi River and Tributaries system which received extensive damage this spring.

The damage occurred from the activation of three floodways and more than 1,000 sand boils resulting from epic flows exceeding 2.3 million cubic feet per second in some locations.

“This task force not only is the right thing to do for the future of the Mississippi River Basin, it is also the best time to do it, as it exploits the momentum from the strong relationships that have formed in response to the 2011 flood season,” Maj. Gen. Michael J. Walsh, Mississippi Valley division commander and president of the Mississippi River Commission said.

The Interagency Recovery Task Force’s first mission will be to prioritize short- and long-term goals to reset and restore key functional elements of the Mississippi River and Tributaries system, including levees, navigation channels and water control structures that protect lives and livelihoods for millions of Americans.

The Corps said the reset effort “will provide the rapid development and installation of initial interim measures designed to provide a basic level of protection and functionality before the next flood season, addressing floodways, dredging for navigation, and levee degradation.

“The restore effort will strive to provide for the development and installation of permanent measures designed to return the structure to full-level protection.”