Project intended to protect Illinois River

ROGERS, Ark. (AP) - A $30 million project intended to stop pollution and erosion in the Illinois River is under way in Arkansas.

More than 20 square miles of land along the river and its tributaries will be planted with trees, native grasses and other plants under the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program.

The program matches a similar one in Oklahoma and will cover the entire Illinois River watershed.

Land owners can apply to sign 15-year contracts for use of their land along the river and streams. They'll be paid an average of $85 an acre with a starting bonus up to $350 per acre.

Oklahoma Attorney General Drew Edmondson is suing Arkansas poultry companies over pollution in the river. He says he hopes the project will help stop pollution.

Information from: The Morning News,

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