Drinking Water Supply Protection for Fergus Falls
The Otter Tail River serves as the main drinking water supply for the city of Fergus Falls. The community recognizes it as a valuable resource which needs to be protected. The lower reach of the Otter Tail River is listed as being impaired for turbidity(muddiness). The listing fixed awareness and galvanized stakeholders to address sediment and phosphorus loading upstream.Through this grant from the Clean Water Fund, the West Otter Tail Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) will inform and engage landowners on the availability and benefits of implementing best management practices (BMPs) such as wetland restorations, buffer strips, rain gardens and sediment basins along the Otter Tail and Pelican Rivers.Through this active engagement the West Otter Tail SWCD projects outcomes of 1,394 acres of wetland restoration and buffers, 6 sediment basins, 3 shoreland restorations and stabilization projects, 1,400 acres of conservation tillage, 6 grassed waterways and 12 rain gardens resulting in a total reduction of sedimentation by 19,311 tons/yr and phosphorus loading by 19,311 lbs/yr.
(i) $1,250,000 the first year and $1,500,000 the second year are for targeted nonpoint restoration technical assistance and engineering. At least 93 percent of this amount must be made available for grants. (2011 - Restoration Technical Assistance)
These projects' outcomes will be 1,394 acres of wetland restoration and buffers, 6 sediment basins, 3 shoreland restorations and stabilization projects, 1,400 acres of conservation tillage, 6 grassed waterways and 12 rain gardens. This will result in a total reduction of sedimentation of 19,311 tons/year and a reduciton of phosphorus loading by 19,311 lbs/year.
The result of this project included enrolling 25 acres in wetland restorations, installing 153 acres of buffers along approximately 5 miles of water bodies, installing 35 acres of windbreaks totaling seven miles, 1550 acres of residue and nutrient management, and establishing 180 acres of upland CRP practices which resulted in a total sediment reduction of 10,015 Tons and phosphorous loading of 4,659 pounds.