Enhanced Shoreline Restoration, Infiltration and Protection Program
The Stearns County SWCD Enhanced Shoreline Restoration, Infiltration and Protection Program has accelerated natural resource restoration projects in Stearns County. The project partners are assisting in recruiting landowners to implement shoreline restoration, erosion control and infiltration projects to protect and improve water quality as well as fish and wildlife habitat. We have prioritized projects based on location and impact. The site will be ranked as a higher priority if the it is located near a body of water that has been listed as impaired or has an approved TMDL. Higher pollutant removals will also result in a higher priority ranking. All of the sites will be evaluated and documented by using eLINK and/or Hydrocad. The Stearns County SWCD Board also has established a policy that all shoreland restoration projects are required to have a native buffer in existence or planted. The native buffer shall cover at least 75% of the shoreline length and extend at least 25 feet landward of the Ordinary High Water Level of the lake or watercourse. In January 2011, approximately 50 landowners have requested assistance from the SWCD. All of the sites have been evaluated thru the project development stage. Of those sites, three have been selected based on priority ranking and have been designed and completed. All three of those sites completed involved shoreline restoration and one site included a raingarden. The balance of the sites that have been identified are currently being pursued in priority order. As a part of the shoreland conservation projects, the Stearns County SWCD Shoreland Deed Restriction process is being used to ensure projects done today will be in place for future generations.
(c) $3,000,000 the first year and $3,000,000 the second year are for nonpoint source pollution reduction and restoration grants to watershed districts, watershed management organizations, counties, and soil and water conservation districts for grants in addition to grants available under paragraphs (a) and (b) to keep water on the land and to protect, enhance, and restore water quality in lakes, rivers, and streams, and to protect groundwater and drinking water. The projects must be of long-lasting public benefit, include a local match, and be consistent with TMDL implementation plans or local water management plans. Up to five percent may be used for administering the grants (2010 - Clean Water Assistance)
This project assisted 47 landowners with preliminary planning which ultimately led to 27 sites implementing 28 conservation practices. The practices included one sediment basin, six bioretention basins and 20 streambank and shoreline protection projects. The estimated aggregate pollution reductions for these practices are: Nitrogen 11 pounds per year ; Phosphorus 151 pounds per year; sediment 614 tons per year.