It's All About the River for Iowa - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

It's All About the River for Iowa

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It's a body of water but in a way, it defines a state. 

And now Iowa is taking the Mississippi river more seriously than ever. 

Governor Branstand was in Davenport on Tuesday, along with several of Iowa's leaders, discussing how the river means more than ever to many people. 

Many things were discussed but the two things that seemed to be most prevalent was trade - keeping Iowa a part of a global economy. 

The United States exports a lot of produce to other countries. Over a billion bushels of soybeans in 2011. 

And much of that, goes to China. 

"China is importing more soybeans than any other country in the world combined," Says Governor Branstad. "That's why we are getting such a good price on our soybeans and the potential in the future is it's going to continue to grow."

But for farmers to benefit for all the exporting, they must be able to sell and transport their goods for a reasonable price. 

Iowa farmer, Kevin Rempp agrees:

"Were in a global economy anymore. So to have useable transportation mode to get to Cedar Rapids or to hog farmers in China. We need an economically affordable way to do that."

And among the ways to do that is to better utilize the barge system of shipping - Getting Iowa's goods to the Gulf of Mexico and beyond.

And as Iowa Department of Transportation Director, Paul Trombino explains, if Iowa doesn't better utilize it's natural transportation system in the Mississippi, they are going to fall behind the times. 

"What we need to think about is a 21st century farm to market system. We have a system today but it's just a road system. 21st century is road rail and water."