AUGUST 7, 2006 - Posted at 11:37 a.m. CDT
CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO - Environmentalists, the government and commercial interests are often at odds over the best use of the nation's natural resources.
The Middle Mississippi River Partnership is the exception. The four-year-old organization, which met recently on an Army Corps of Engineers vessel cruising from Cape Girardeau, Missouri, south to Chester, Illinois, brings together a diverse group of 16 member organizations.
Their mission: To improve life along the Mississippi for economic interests, the natural world and the people who live along a 195-mile stretch from the confluence with the Mississippi River near St. Louis to where the Mississippi and Ohio rivers connect. The focus includes land in the flood plain and islands on the river.