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The Morganza spillway is located about 45 miles northwest of Baton Rouge, and if opened, will send water into the rural area between the Atchafalaya and Mississippi Rivers in central Louisiana. (Photo: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg) The Morganza spillway is located about 45 miles northwest of Baton Rouge, and if opened, will send water into the rural area between the Atchafalaya and Mississippi Rivers in central Louisiana. (Photo: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg)

(Bloomberg) — A major barrier that keeps the Mississippi River in its current path may be opened for just the third time in its history, potentially flooding a large part of rural Louisiana and affecting refineries in the region.

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