The Drinking Water Contaminants of Emerging Concern (CEC) program identifies environmental contaminants for which current health-based standards currently do not exist or need to be updated, investigate the potential for human exposure to these chemicals, and develop guidance values for drinking water. Contaminants evaluated by CEC staff include contaminants that have been released or detected in Minnesota waters (surface water and groundwater) or that have the potential to migrate to or be detected in Minnesota waters.
This project is the continuation of efforts to restore and protect watersheds and streams in Minnesota’s Lake Superior coastal region. The project provides the means to evaluate water quality impairments, complete pollutant source assessments, establish loading capacities and allocations for impairments, and to evaluate and recommend protection strategies for high quality water resources. It also leverages and encourages adoption of locally driven solutions to watershed management and protection.
The purpose of this project is to provide technical support to data generators and users of the Saint Louis River Area of Concern (SLRAOC) to support the Beneficial Use Impairment (BUI) removal process.
The St. Louis River watershed is one of the largest watersheds in northern Minnesota and the largest single contributing watershed to Lake Superior. Surface waters are abundant with 353 lakes and 97 streams segments. Large areas of forest and wetlands help to sustain areas of exceptional water quality. However, land use changes have degraded many lakes, rivers, and streams. 21 stream reaches have aquatic life impairments, as identified by high turbidity (1 reach), poor quality aquatic macro-invertebrate community (16 reaches), and/or poor quality fish community (12 reaches).
This project will create a culvert inventory database for county and township roads in the southwest portion of St. Louis County that contains the St. Louis River watershed. Data will be used by the County Public Works Department to identify and prioritize stream crossings in need of replacement or increasing upstream storm water retention to reduce the potential for culvert failure during large runoff events, factoring in stream health (fish habitat and passage, sediment transport and hydrologic connection) while protecting infrastructure.
This project will augment data collection efforts for the Lake Superior South, Cloquet, St. Louis River, and Duluth Urban Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy (WRAPS) projects. Activities include: attaining datasets for watershed stressors and geomorphic conditions, water quality gap monitoring, and civic engagement. The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency has been collaborating with the South St. Louis Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) to complete WRAPS related technical and civic engagement work in the Lake Superior basin for the past five years.
This is a joint project between the United States Geological Survey (USGS), Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA), North Dakota, and Manitoba. The project is a basin-wide, up-to-date water quality trend analysis using the "QWTrend" program for approximately 40 bi-national river sites to review nutrients, total suspended solids, total dissolved solids, sulfate and chloride from 1980 - 2015.