At Ga port, river respirators to help fish breathe

      SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) - Plans to deepen the Savannah harbor include

      a costly proposal to

      ensure fish can still breathe by using a dozen

      machines to inject oxygen into the river.

      In its final report on the harbor deepening released this month,

      the Army Corps of Engineers

      estimates it would cost taxpayers $70

      million to get the 20-foot-tall oxygen machines set up,


      another $1.2 million each year to maintain and operate them.

      The machines would mechanically make up for a small loss of

      oxygen at the river bottom

      where fish, worms and even bacteria need

      it to breathe. The same technology is used in lakes

      and reservoirs

      across the U.S., but critics say using the machines to justify

      inflicting damage

      to the river is going too far.

      (Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)