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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 73.djvu/309

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305
SPOLIATION OF THE FALLS OF NIAGARA

Unfortunately in the Province of Ontario it has become a political question, and there the government has adopted the Power Company which is causing the greatest amount of damage, although they could have obtained their supply from two other companies which are doing relatively little harm.

A prominent man at Niagara Falls, N. Y., has expressed himself as follows: "The subject of the diversion for power purposes is a burning question here, and a great number of unreliable and misleading statements have been made by interested parties to justify the diversion, stating that no damage will be done, and the work of Spencer" referring to my recent book on the Falls of Niagara[1]) "is most timely in giving the results of a scientific examination of the whole problem, with the data on which the conclusions are based." In that work, the data are brought down only to January, 1906, but this contribution is based upon additional information extended to the present day, enabling me to give fuller and more precise results than in the original work.

The preservation of the falls now depends upon the governments at Washington and Ottawa. In the United States, apart from those interested in the diversion of the water, there is a wide-spread sentiment in favor of saving the scenic wonders of Niagara. But now another interest joins hands with this, which is economic and of great magnitude, namely, the protection of navigation. It is to be hoped that the national governments will so control the matter that this unique world-treasure will be preserved for all time.

At the present time the commission recommends the use of 28,500 cubic feet per second for the two restricted American power companies and for the Chicago drainage canal, while 36,000 cubic feet per second are conceded to Canada.

  1. "The Falls of Niagara," by J. W. Spencer, Geological Survey of Canada, 1907.