The goal of the project is the development of an overall strategy for reduction of turbidity/TSS, with sets of sediment reduction initiatives and actions for various sources, to address the Minnesota River Turbidity TMDL and the South Metro Mississippi River TSS TMDL.
The goal is to facilitate strategic networking, learning, and implementation in targeted groups to assess, build, and leverage community capacity (i.e. community resources and values) to increase best management practice (BMP) adoption to restore and protect water quality in the Blue Earth River watershed
This project will develop a watershed approach plan, including impaired waters allocations, for the Mustinka Watershed, located at the headwaters of the Red River of the North, in western Minnesota, lying partly in Grant, Stevens, Ottertail, Big Stone, and Traverse counties. The watershed approach plan will set water quality goals for the watershed, recommend allocations for achieving total maximum daily loads where waters do not meet state standards and are listed as impaired.
This project will place the Cedar River watershed on a sustainable and clearly understood implementation process for comprehensive water management. All people living in the watershed and all groups operating and managing land in the watershed, are responsible stakeholders in the effort. Objectives for this phase of the project include:
1. Develop a comprehensive watershed restoration and protection strategy.
2. Continue development of a more coordinated and comprehensive citizen participation process.
This project will build upon existing planning and implementation efforts already taken on in the project area. The collection of existing information will be used to complement water information in support of a more successful and sustainable water quality improvement and protection implementation program. This will be achieved by active civic engagement activities throughout Phase I of this project.
This project will support a civic engagement cohort that will be offered in southwest Minnesota to foster partnering and build capacity of local government, organizations, and residents for effective civic engagement in water protection and restoration. This project will also build networks and the skill set of local resource professionals to do effective civic engagement work for water restoration and protection. The cohort will be administered through the Minnesota River Board (MRB), established in 1995 with a goal of focusing water management efforts on the local level.
This project Phase will collect data, background information, and watershed characteristics within the Red Lake River watershed. This information will be documented within the framework of early draft TMDL Reports (with background information, but no load calculations) for impaired reaches within this watershed and early draft protection plans for the areas in the watershed that are not currently impaired.
This project will complete an implementation plan, as required by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, for the Zumbro River turbidity TMDL project. It will also revise the Zumbro River Watershed Management Plan (completed 2007) to ensure it continues to reflect local needs, incorporates new information, and develops more effective linkages with related local, state and federal government programs.
The Children’s Museum of Southern Minnesota (CMSM) will complete the innovative community engagement process started with the previous Legacy grant. CMSM will build upon the progress created with the previous Legacy grant by transitioning the team's focus to carrying-out of strategic access strategies that engage a diversity of community members in the exhibit development process, resulting in the completion of fabrication plans for exhibits and environments that are accessible; engaging; and reflect the diverse art, culture, and heritage of southern Minnesota.
In 2007, the Children's Museum of Southern Minnesota (CMSM) conducted an environmental scan of early learning opportunities for children in southern Minnesota. It became apparent that the region creates few opportunities for children to engage in self-directed learning experiences in social settings; in particular, opportunities that create access to arts, culture, and heritage. This is still true today.
This phase of the project will complete the analysis of existing and newly collected water quality data in the Red River of the North-Grand Marais Creek watershed and also verify the impairments on the currently listed reaches and determine the status of the remaining river reaches as being either impaired or currently meeting standards. Stakeholder involvement and public participation will be a primary focus throughout the project.
The goal of this project is to establish load reduction requirements for impaired waters and to develop restoration strategies to improve water quality for impaired waters and protection strategies to maintain the quality of water for water bodies meeting standards.
The consultant LimnoTech will support response to Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) comments the peer review process, United States Environmental Protection Agency and public notice. They will then revise the TMDL document as needed and attend internal and external project meetings.
This project will initiate the process of community engagement in the LeSueur River watershed by assessing the needs and interests of the community and bringing a diverse set of stakeholders together to determine how best to foster action in improving and protecting water quality.
This project will include analysis of existing and newly collected water quality data to verify the impairments on the currently listed reaches and to determine the status of the remaining river reaches as being either impaired or currently meeting standards. Stakeholder involvement and public participation will be a focus throughout the Watershed Approach Project. The project provides an opportunity to assess and leverage the capacity for the local community to engage in the process of watershed management and to adopt protection and restoration practices.
This project will address Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA), United States Environment Protection Agency (EPA), and public comments on draft Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) studies and Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy (WRAPS) reports, preliminary draft TMDL studies, and public noticed TMDL studies and WRAPS reports for the Lower Red River Watershed and the Lake of the Woods Watershed and produce final versions of the TMDL studies and WRAPS reports for each watershed.
This project supports monitoring and assessment activities by MPCA EAO staff and includes lab analysis, equipment, and fieldwork expenses associated with monitoring and assessment activities within the described priority watersheds.
Lake Monitoring: Lakes are monitored for nutrients, clarity and other information to provide the data needed to assess the aquatic recreation use support.
This project will develop the Pomme de Terre Watershed Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) study for the second round of the 10-year watershed approach cycle in the Pomme de Terre watershed. This phase of the project will address 4 stream impairments and 3 lake impairments and produce a draft TMDL document. A second phase may be needed as the stressor ID report identifies more stream reaches with TMDL relevant stressors.
Certain stretches of the Pomme de Terre River have been identified as impaired. This project will quantify the reductions in pollutant loading that would be necessary to bring water quality in the impaired stretches to an acceptable level. It will also identify strategies that would improve water quality in these impaired stretches. Some funds will support public input activities into the Pomme de Terre River watershed management plan.
This project will establish a framework with the Pomme de Terre River Association (PDTRA), county staff, Soil and Water Conservation District staff, and state agencies that will outline their involvement throughout the development of the Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy (WRAPS) for the Pomme de Terre River watershed. This work will form the basis to establish restoration and protection strategies that local governments and watershed organizations can use to make decisions that will lead to protecting and restoring the waters in the watershed.
This project will support water quality monitoring and data analysis in nine major watersheds (8-digit Hydrologic Unit Codes) of the Lower Red River Basin. The monitoring will assist in providing water chemistry data needed to calculate annual pollutant loads for the Major Watershed Load Monitoring Program (MWLMP) and provide short term data sets of select parameters to other MPCA programs.
This project will develop an effective transferable model to engage and educate watershed residents, stakeholders and others to better understand and protect watershed ecostystems through environmental monitoring, training, and formal and informal education programs in their local watershed. The project will build on the foundation of the existing Red River Basin River Watch program by strengthening three main activity areas: 1) curriculum integration and teacher training, 2) youth leadership and civic engagement, and 3) applied research collaboration and watershed science skills building.
International Water Institute (IWI) staff will monitor 24 sites in the Bois de Sioux, Mustinka (2 sites), Buffalo (8 sites), Red Lake (4 sites), Sandhill (3 sites), Thief (2 sites), and Tamarac River (3 sites) Watersheds intensively over a 2 year period in an attempt to collect 25 samples per year at each site. If conditions allow for the collection of all planned samples, 1200 stream samples will be collected over the time period. Monitoring will include field measurements, observations, and at least three photographs during each site visit.
TMDL project in the Root River Watershed that will support surface water assessment, analysis of data, interpretation of southeast Minnesota's karst landscape, stressor identification, TMDL computation, source assessment, and implementation planning.
This project will identify priority management zones (PMZ), for the purposes of water quality restoration and protection, within the LeSueur River major watershed. This project is only one component of a larger effort in the LeSueur watershed to complete Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) studies while engaging citizens and landowners in land management planning.
Turbidity and sediment yield from the Le Sueur River watershed to the Minnesota River is a problem. Studies have shown that 200,000 tons/yr come from non-field sources and 25,000 tons/yr come from field sources. With this grant we will develop strategies to reduce sediment yield from the Freeborn County Cobb River Ditch subwatershed.
This project will continue the development of a Pre-Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy (WRAPS) assessment, evaluation, community outreach and involvement, and development project that will provide for a comprehensive and more successful watershed restoration approach.
OVERALL PROJECT OUTCOME AND RESULTS This project identified and prioritized areas in the Zumbro River Watershed that were determined critical for restoring and protecting water quality. Studies suggested that small areas of the landscape contribute disproportionately to nonpoint source pollution. So implementation of conservation projects that focus on those areas will maximize water quality benefits and ensure efficient use of resources.