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 purpose of this project is to prepare a Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy (WRAPS) Report and Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) Study for public notice. This project will include addressing and incorporating Minnesota Pollution Control (MPCA) review comments in both documents. The TMDL Study has been submitted to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) for preliminary review. USEPA comments will be addressed prior to public notice.
The goals of Phase I of the Marsh River Watershed (WRW) Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy (WRAPS) project are to: 1) gather or develop watershed data needed for the development of the WRAPS project; 2) establish project and sub-basin work groups, develop a social outcomes strategy, and develop a civic engagement evaluation strategy to guide the WRAPS project; and 3) begin to identify, create, and organize tools that can be used to determine potential stressors and priority management areas.
Phase 2 of the Marsh River Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy (WRAPS) project includes: continued civic engagement; production of the Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) study, which allocates pollutant load reductions for impaired waters; and production of the WRAPS report, which identifies implementation strategies that will maintain or improve water quality in many lakes and streams throughout the watershed.
The Prioritization, Targeting, and Measuring Water Quality Improvement Application (PTMA) connects the general qualitative strategies in a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) and Watershed Restoration and Protection (WRAP) and the identification of implementable on-the-ground Best Management Practices (BMPs). Leveraging geospatial data from the International Water Institute this application will be developed for two pilot areas within the Red River Basin.
The goal of this project is to development a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) study that addresses all of the non-mercury-related impaired reaches along the Red River of the North (RRN). The TMDL study will provide an analytical and strategic foundation for recommending restoration strategies for impaired waters. This phase of the project will also include civic engagement efforts by providing water quality framework and stakeholder activities for civic/citizen engagement and communication.
The International Water Institute (IWI) will monitor 42 sites (3 basin, 12 major watershed, and 27 subwatershed) in the Red River and Upper Mississippi River Basins intensively during 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019. There will also be 5 sites in the Red River Basin where mercury samples will be collected in 2016 and 2017 and sent to Minnesota Department of Health for analysis. The IWI will collect water samples across the range of flow conditions targeting sample collection at times of moderate to high flow.
This project is for Minnesota Legislative Clean Water Fund funding to engage citizens in local watershed monitoring, to work with regional partners to promote understanding and protection of watersheds, and to organize and facilitate gathering of scientific data all for the benefit of water quality in the Red River Basin.
As part of the FY 2012 funding cycle, the Board of Water and Soil Resources granted funds for development of the Water Quality Decision Support Application (WQDSA). The WQDSA will provide land and water managers with geospatial data and online tools to prioritize, market, and implement actions on the landscape to achieve water quality objectives identified in local and state water plans and to ensure that public funding decisions are strategic and defensible.
PROJECT GOAL: Improve agricultural production and reduce flooding losses while minimizing the unwanted environmental impacts of subsurface drainage.
PROJECT OBJECTIVE: Demonstrate controlled tile drainage as a flood mitigation practice as well as the water quality and quantity benefits. The project is intended to set an example to increase the adoption of drainage water management practices in the Red River Valley.
Controlled drainage and a saturated buffer are both being evaluated as part of this project.