Environment: End of the Barge Canal

President Nixon surprised and delighted conservationists last week by halting construction of the controversial Cross-Florida Barge Canal. About a third of the 107-mile-long waterway has already been built across northern Florida by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Cost to date: $50 million, a great deal of money to go down the drain. But stopping the project. Nixon said, "will prevent a past mistake from causing permanent damage."

Conservationists never saw the canal as anything but a huge environmental blunder (TIME, April 13). By connecting the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico, the 9-ft.-deep waterway would have saved shippers a 600-mile...

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