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This work has been shown to be justified and the importance of its early completion emphasized because of the fact that since it was first presented to the engineers, the petroleum industry has been increasing the size of its petroleum tankers to the extent where the larger type vessels now require a channel 33 to 35 feet in depth for navigation under full load. This port is one of the major. oil ports on the Atlantic coast and the recommended work is essential for economical and advantageous use of this port for a distribution point by the petroleum industry. Additionally, commercial dry-cargo vessels using this port would be greatly advantaged by the approved deepening. All phases of the needs for this work have been thoroughly explored and approved by the Army engineers.
The pending rivers and harbors bill which comes before you on the above date we understand includes the Cape Fear River project. It is vitally important to the petroleum industry serving this port and a large hinterland area that the channel be deepened so that the maximum use of their larger type tankers can be obtained, thereby avoiding the present necessity of entering this port in the 32-foot channel with part loads more frequently at much greater expense.
In the interest of this industry in particular and shipping in general I am writing on behalf of this board with the request that you and your committee give the matter favorable action. Yours very truly,
Addison HEWLETT, Chairman. Mr. LARCADE. I would also like to submit for the record a letter, under date of April 26, from C. D. Hogue, chairman, Wilmington Port Commission, Wilmington, N. C. (Letter submitted by Mr. Larcade follows:)
WILMINGTON PORT COMMISSION,
Wilmington, N. C., April 26, 1949. Hon. HENRY D. LARCADE, Jr., Chairman, R and ors Committee of the Committee on Public Works,
House of Representatives, Washington, D. C. MY DEAR CONGRESSMAN LARCADE: Understanding that your committee is to consider pending rivers and harbors bill on April 29 and that the matter of widening and deepening the Cape Fear River between Wilmington and the ocean bar is among the projects for consideration, I am writing to urge that favorable action be taken on the recommendations which have been made by the Army engineers and funds be appropriated for early commencement of this work.
I think it is appropriate to point out to you that since this project was initiated with the local engineers some 11 years ago that the need for this deeper channel has become greatly emphasized. This is due to the fact that Wilmington is one of the major petroleum ports along the Atlantic coast and is served by the larger type tankers which when fully loaded have a draft that requires a channel 34 to 35 feet in depth. As long as we are compelled to serve the petroleum industry with our present channel of 32 feet these larger tankers are forced to discharge part cargo at other ports before entering the river to the oil terminals at Wilmington, which greatly increases their operating expense and minimizes the use of the storage facilities at Wilmington.
It is very important to this port, the facilities located here for storage of petroleum, and the users of petroleum throughout North Carolina and adjoining States, to have a channel provided which will afford maximum service by these tankers at any and all times, and also be extremely helpful in the handling of general cargo vessels into and out of the port at all hours of the day.
We hope that you will act favorably on this particular project and recommend that it be included in the pending rivers and harbors bill.
Will you be so kind as to advise me in connection with this matter and greatly oblige? Yours very truly,
C. D. HOGUE, Chairman. Mr. LARCADE. All these letters and telegrams are in support of this project.
Mr. PICKETT. Mr. Chairman, I would like to ask Colonel Moore or the Congressman if there has been to their knowledge any expressed opposition to the project.
Colonel MOORE. There has been none to my knowledge, Mr. Pickett.
Mr. CARLYLE. There has been none at all. Everyone that I have heard say anything about it seem to favor it.
Mr. LARCADE. Are there any other questions by members of the committee?
SAVANNAH RIVER BASIN, GA. AND S. C.
(S. Doc. No. 6, 81st Cong.) Mr. LARCADE. Congressman Brown, we have a number of witnesses who are also supposed to appear on this project that are interested in the Savannah River project, and it is further down on the agenda of the committee. I am wondering if the witnesses in opposition to this project are present.
Mr. Brown. I didn't know of any opposition.
Mr. LARCADE. Is there any witness present here in opposition to the Savannah River project ?
Mr. Jones. Mr. Chairman, do you have any information that anybody objected to this?
Mr. L'ARCADE. Request was made by certain witnesses to appear on this project.
(There was discussion off the record.)
Mr. LARCADE. The clerk states that all witnesses and interested parties have been advised of the hearings on this project, and unless the committee objects, we will skip the preceding project and take up at this time, in order to accommodate Congressman Brown of Georgia, the Savannah River, Ga. and S. C., project, Senate Document No. 6, Eighty-first Congress, first session.
Colonel, are you prepared to present this project at this time!
Mr. Chairman, the upper map on the board is a duplicate of the one you have in the Senate document before you, designated as plate 2 in the back of the document.
The report on Savannah River Basin, Ga. and S. C., as published in Senate Document No. 6, Eighty-first Congress, is in response to a resolution adopted March 28, 1946, by the Committee on Commerce of the United States Senate.
Savannah River flows southeasterly along the boundary line between Georgia and South Carolina for 297.4 miles to Bull Street, Savannah, Ga., which is the zero of the mileage system for this report, and thence continues approximately 16.6 miles to the Atlantic Ocean. The federally improved Intracoastal Waterway crosses the river 8.5 miles below Bull Street. Savannah Harbor, which has been improved for deep-draft navigation, extends upstream to 7.1 miles above Bull Street. the head of navigation at August, Ga., is 197.4 miles above the upper limit of Savannah Harbor.
Tides have a mean range of 7 feet at Bull Street and extend upstream to about mile 23.5.
Savannah and Augusta, the two largest cities in the Savannah River Basin, had populations of 95,996 and 65,919, respectively, in 1940. Both are important industrial cities and railroad centers.
The principal manufactures of the Augusta metropolitan district are brick and tile, fertilizer, kaolin, textiles, and wood products. The basin produces cotton, tobacco, grains, livestock, poultry, and other agricultural commodities.
The completed existing Federal 'navigation project for Savannah River below Augusta provides for a channel from Savannah Harbor to the head of navigation at Augusta, 6 feet deep and 75 feet wide at ordinary summer flow which corresponds to a discharge of 4,000 cubic feet per second at Augusta, to be secured by construction of a lock and dam at New Savannah Bluff, mile 188.3 and by open-river work. The lock is 56 feet wide and 360 feet long.
Costs to the United States for the existing project below Augusta to June 30, 1947 were $2,751,799 for new work and $1,695,762 for maintenance, operation, and care. The latest approved estimate for annual cost of maintenance and operation is $50,000. 1 Savannah River, in the section under consideration, follows a tortuous course and for a considerable part of the time its discharge is less than the project ordinary summer flow. During the years 1946 and 1947 the controlling depth was less than 6 feet for 46 percent of the time. Clark Hill Reservoir now under construction is a unit in the comprehensive plan for development of the water resources of the Savannah River Basin for multiple purposes. The operation of the Clark Hill Reservoir after completion and reregulation of its outflow will insure a minimum flow of 5,300 cubic feet per second at Augusta and that thereafter the controlling depth in the existing channel below August will be 7 feet or more at all times.
Commerce on Savannah River between Augusta and Savannah Harbor averaged about 47,420 tons annually during the 10-year period 1938–47. The commerce for 1947 was estimated at 24,914 tons, consisting of 11,225 tons of logs, 6,760 tons of brick, 3,644 tons of petroleum products, and 3,285 tons of pulpwood.
In spite of the inadequacies of the channel, a brick company at August established a barge line in 1947 for delivery of its product to Savannah and various points on the Intracoastal Waterway and for transportation of petroleum products to Augusta on return trips. Its barge made 52 one-way trips on the river in 1947. Controlling river depths limited the barge loadings to a maximum of 6.4 feet and to 4 feet or less on 34 of the trips.
Local interests desire further improvement of Savannah River to provide a navigation channel 9 to 12 feet deep between Savannah and Augusta.
They claim that such a channel would result in large savings in transportation costs to established industries and point out that when power becomes available from the Clark Hill development new industries, which will increase the potential value of an adequate waterway, can be expected to locate in the area. In the opinion of its advocates, the waterway would further stimulate development of the area resulting in increased traffic for all types of carriers in the region.
The district engineer presents a plan for further improvement of the Savannah River between the upper limits of Savannah Harbor and the head of navigation at Augusta to provide a channel 90 feet wide and 9 feet deep below the low-water plane which he finds will result from operation of Clark Hill Reservoir and reregulation of the outflow from its powerplant. This plan provides for constructing dikes to contract the river channel, protecting the banks with wooden mattresses and riprap, dredging shoal areas, easing bends including the construction of cut-offs and snagging. He finds that this plan is economically justified. He, therefore, recommends modification of
the existing project for Savannah River below August to provide for a channel 9 feet deep and 90 feet wide between Savannah Harbor and the present head of navigation at Augusta, to be obtained by dredging and open-river regulation, subject to certain conditions of local
cooperation. The division engineer recommends accomplishment of the described channel based upon low-water flows which will obtain after completion of the Clark Hill Reservoir.
Local interests were advised of the nature of the reports of the district and division engineers and invited to submit additional information to the Board. Upon their request, a hearing was held by the Board, in its office, at which representatives of certain local interests presented data in support of their request for further improvement of the channel between Augusta and Savannah as recommended by the reporting officers. Representatives of railroad interests also presented data at the hearing. They claimed that existing transportation facilities are adequate for the needs of the area and that further improvement of the river for navigation is not justified.
The Board of Engineers for Rivers and Harbors has reviewed the reports of the district and division engineers and given careful consideration to the information and views presented by local interests advocating the additional improvement and by railroad representatives contending that the work proposed is unnecessary. The Board concurs generally in the views of the reporting officers and concludes that the prospective benefits economically justify the estimated expenditures required for further improvement of the channel for navigation as recommended by the division engineer.
The Board recommends modification of the existing project for Savannah River below Augusta, Ga., to provide for a chanel 9 feet deep and 90 feet wide between the upper end of Savannah Harbor and the present head of navigation at Augusta, Ga., the improvement to be based upon the low-flow conditions resulting from reregulation of the outflow from the Clark Hill development, and to be secured by dredging and open-river regulating works, generally in accordance with the plan of the district engineer and with such modifications thereof as in the discretion of the Secretary of the Army and the Chief of Engineers may be advisable, subject to certain conditions of local cooperation.
In accordance with law, a copy of the Chief of Engineers' proposed report was furnished to the Governor of South Carolina and to the Governor of Georgia for comment. Both Governors favor the proposed improvement.
In accordance with section 4 of the Executive Order No. 9384, the report was submitted to the Bureau of the Budget for information as to the relationship of the proposed report to the program of the President. The Bureau of the Budget advised that there would be no objection to the submission of the report to Congress.
The Chief of Engineers after due consideration of these reports concurs in the views and recommendations of the Board.
The improvement is recommended subject to the condition that local interests agree to (a) provide, without cost to the United States, all necessary rights-of-way and spoil-disposal areas for the new work and subsequent maintenance, when and as required; (6) hold and save the United States free from any damages resulting from construction and maintenance of the improvement; and (c) provide and maintain adequate terminal and transfer facilities, including a suitable public terminal at Augusta, Ga., open to all on equal terms.
The cost to United States for construction is estimated in the report at $3,137,000. The cost to local interests for lands and rights-of-way is estimated at $5,300. Total estimated cost is $3,142,300. The total annual carrying charges are estimated at $362,625, including $236,900 for Federal maintenance in addition to maintenance costs for the project now authorized.
The district engineer estimates the commerce for movement on the waterway soon after its completion at 577,000 tons annually and the resulting annual savings in transportation costs to shippers at $490,000. The conditions 10 years after completion of construction of Clark Hill Reservoir, the district engineer estimates the waterway commerce at 977,000 tons annually and the annual savings in transportation costs at $955,000.
These estimates indicate a benefit-cost ratio of 1.35 for early realization and of 2.63 for expected conditions 10 years after completion of Clark Hill Reservoir.
Prospective traffic showing commodity, tonnage, and annual savings in transportation cost, soon after completion of the project:
After completion of Clark Hill Reservoir, a large additional supply of cheap power, about 700,000,000 kilowatt-hours annually, will become available. This power will result in the industrialization of the Augusta area. From information made available to the district engineer and confirmed by an independent survey by the Board's staff, a large block of potential commerce will develop, in addition to the prospective commerce. Conservatively estimated, 400,000 tons of this commerce would move over the 9-foot channel at an estimated annual saving in transportation cost of $465,000.
With a 9-foot channel to Augusta, Savannah River will become an important tributary of the Intracoastal Waterway. A large volume of commerce will move to and from Augusta via the Intracoastal Waterway similar to that now carried on that waterway to other localities with adequate channel connections.
That concludes my statement, sir.
Mr. LARCADE. This project includes the Clark Hill Reservoir, does it, Colonel ?
Colonel MOORE. The comprehensive plan of improvement for the Savannah River Basin includes Clark Hill Reservoir.
Mr. LARCADE. And the annual savings upon completion of this project that we now have under consideration will be $490,000 annually and within 10 years, it is estimated that this amount will be increased to the sum of $955,000 annually; is that correct?