|| Preface -- Acknowledgments -- Green River / William Cullen Bryant -- Map: Selected sites -- Part 1: Fall: -- 1: Crumbling edifice: -- Disjuncture -- Instigators -- Glen -- Water hubris -- 2: Planters, sawyers, and snags: the U S Army Corps of Engineers: -- Building strong -- Not just peanuts -- Rusting rebar -- Big boo-boo -- Under siege -- Invitation -- 3: Manless land: the bureau of reclamation: -- Water science -- Inland empire and the fifty princesses -- Dinosaur -- Dominy -- Sugar city -- Turning the corner -- Blueprint for reform -- Pendulum and the rogue -- Water -- Heritage of conflict -- Part 2: Dismembarment: -- 4: Handout horticulture: farming and the Feds: -- Argo-industrial complex -- Fish traps -- Dying 4 water -- Crops, capitalism, and context -- 5: Falling waters: hydropower and renewable energy: -- Smolts and volts -- Scenic and the sacred -- Bucket of ashes -- 6: Rivers into waterways: barging, locks, and dams: -- Tallstacks -- Cooking the data -- Dinner buckets and party barges -- National duty -- 7: Black water rising: the myth of flood control: -- Storm of Good Friday -- Galloway -- House-a-fire -- Coon-ass -- House of death floats by -- 8: Downstream dilemma: water pollution: -- Toxics run through it -- Song of the Chattahoochee -- Too many federal toilets, not enough senators -- Superfund river -- Pure river of water of life -- Part 3: Resurrection: -- 9: River city: urban riverscapes: -- Belle Isle -- River of the angels -- River of democracy and the emerald necklace -- Great multitude of fish -- Pleasantness of the river -- 10: Net losses: habitat and endangered species: -- Alphabet gumbo -- God bless America -- Ten thousand years of fishing -- Foot deep with fish -- Other side of the river -- Show me the money -- 11: Playground on the move: river recreation: -- Moving-water recreation -- Agents of change -- Lunkers and extreme instant shade -- Water warriors -- 12: River commons: -- Kitty Clyde's sister -- Black-side up -- Katrina syndrome -- Amenity rivers -- Instigators redux -- Lotic dreams -- Notes -- Index.
|| Overview: Daniel McCool not only chronicles the history of water development agencies in America and the way in which special interests have abused rather than preserved the country's rivers, he also narrates the second, brighter act in this ongoing story: the surging, grassroots movement to bring these rivers back to life and ensure they remain pristine for future generations. The culmination of ten years of research and observation, McCool's book confirms the surprising news that America's rivers are indeed returning to a healthier, free-flowing condition. The politics of river restoration demonstrates how strong grassroots movements can challenge entrenched powers and win. Through passion and dedication, ordinary people are reclaiming the American landscape, forming a "river republic" of concerned citizens from all backgrounds and sectors of society. As McCool shows, the history, culture, and fate of America is tied to its rivers, and their restoration is a microcosm mirroring American beliefs, livelihoods, and an increasing awareness of what two hundred years of environmental degradation can do. McCool profiles the individuals he calls "instigators," who initiated the fight for these waterways and, despite enormous odds, have succeeded in the near-impossible task of challenging and changing the status quo. Part I of the volume recounts the history of America's relationship to its rivers; part II describes how and why Americans "parted" them out, destroying their essence and diminishing their value; and part III shows how society can live in harmony with its waterways while restoring their well-being-and, by extension, the well-being of those who depend on them.