The goal of this project is to perform water quality monitoring and load calculation duties to accomplish MPCA's Watershed Pollutant Load Monitoring Network monitoring efforts at seven sites for the Redwood and Cottonwood River watersheds as well as the Minnesota River site near Morton.
Lower Prior Lake was the target of a 2011-2013 diagnostic and feasibility study that identified projects and ranked subwatershed by phosphorus loading to the lake. This project is in a high loading subwatershed and includes three elements designed to reduce phosphorus loading and control rates and volumes of stormwater runoff: 1) retrofitting an existing ditch section with in-line iron-sand filters; 2) expanding storage capacity and creating wetland upstream of the ditch; and 3) installing a new control structure in an existing berm.
Arctic Lake, while not listed as an impaired water on the statewide 303(d) list, both regularly exceeds the statewide phosphorus standard for shallow lakes and drains directly to Upper Prior Lake, which is impaired for nutrients Reducing Phosphorus to Arctic Lake will help reverse the current declining water quality while also reducing the loading entering Upper Prior Lake.
This project will accelerate production of County Geologic Atlases (part A). An atlas is a set of geologic maps and associated databases for a county that facilitate informed management of natural resources, especially water and minerals.
The AgBMP Loan Program provides needed funding for local implementation of clean water practices at an extremely low cost, is unique in its structure, and is not duplicated by any other source of funding. The AgBMP loan program provides 3% loans through local lenders to farmers, rural landowners, and agriculture supply businesses. Funds are used for proven practices that prevent non-point source water pollution or solve existing water quality problems.
This project will complete the installation of four nested wells to the Ambient Groundwater Monitoring Network and relocated one well in the City of Saint Paul. Braun Intertec will coordinate site access and oversee the well installation by a state drilling contractor.
South Central Technical Service Area (SCTSA) will use this Clean Water Fund grant to provide Soil and Water Conservation Districts and other local organizations in its eleven-county area with a Geographic Information System (GIS) Technician to assist in using available GIS information to target specific locations where Best Management Practices (BMPs) can be installed to help improve water quality.
Working with the Metropolitan Council, the University of Minnesota - Minnesota Technical Assistance Program (MnTAP) is investigating the opportunity for water conservation by private industrial water users across the Twin Cities metropolitan region. Private industrial water users are defined as industries that use private wells for their water supply. This work is determining factors that encourage or create barriers for implementation of identified industrial water conservation opportunities.
Bartlett Lake in Koochiching County is impaired for eutrophication and has already undergone a paleolimnological study. This project will utilize the data and results of paleolimnological study to develop in-lake management strategies that, if implemented, could significantly improve the water quality of Bartlett Lake.
With limited funds and limited staff time available for targeting critical service areas and implementing Best Management Practices (BMPs), Geographic Information System (GIS)-based tools that pinpoint locations where BMPs will have the highest effectiveness are increasingly important. The Blue Earth County/SWCD Watershed Implementation Targeting project will utilize LiDAR topographic data to determine areas of high importance for BMP implementation. The county is located in the Blue Earth, LeSueur, Watonwan and Middle Minnesota watersheds where there is a high density of impaired waters.
The Blue Earth SWCD will be monitoring 7 stream sites located in the Le Sueur River Watershed. The stream sites will be monitored at the road crossing locations via bridge, culvert or shore. Onsite conditions will be recorded, water sample readings will be taken for Secchi tube, specific conductance, temperature, pH, DO, and photos taken.
This project will install new stormwater treatment practices in neighborhoods directly draining to Coon Lake. The objective is to remove phosphorus, which fuels algae growth, before the water is discharged into the lake. Seventeen potential project sites have been identified and ranked and include curb-cut rain gardens, swales, stabilizing stormwater discharge points, and a basin outlet modification.
The Discovery Farms program is a farmer-led effort to gather field-scale water quality information on different types of farms across Minnesota. The three pillars of the program are farmer leadership, credible research, and communicating results.
The State Fiscal Year 2014-2015 Clean Water Fund appropriation identified the northeast metro as an area where potential solutions are needed to address emerging water supply issues. The Metropolitan Council, in conjunction with S.E.H. consultants, evaluated water supply approaches to serve the northeastern part of the Twin Cities metropolitan area. A subregional study areas was selected based on the indication of potential problems with the long-term sustainability of current water supplies, as well as expressed interest by community stakeholders.
The State Fiscal Year 2014-2015 Clean Water Fund appropriation identified the northeast metro as an area where potential solutions are needed to address emerging water supply issues. Three projects are underway to identify the advantages and disadvantages of combining water supply systems, using new water supply sources such as treated water from Saint Paul Regional Water Services or raw water from the Mississippi or St. Croix rivers, and optimizing groundwater pumping to protect water levels in White Bear Lake and other lakes across the northeast metro.
The Minnesota DNR and the Minnesota Forest Resources Council work with forest landowners, managers and loggers to implement a set of voluntary sustainable forest management guidelines that include water quality best management practices (BMPs) to ensure sustainable habitat, clean water, and productive forest soils, all contributing to healthy watersheds. This project will monitor the implementation of these forest management guidelines and BMPs on forested watersheds in MN.
This project will install an iron enhanced sand filter (IESF) to restore water quality in Golden Lake. Golden Lake is within a fully developed area of the Twin Cities, surrounded by residential land use, and the focal point of a city park. The IESF will achieve 11% of the phosphorus reduction (21 lbs/yr) required for Golden Lake to meet State water quality standards, as identified in the approved Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL).
Minnesota’s use of groundwater has increased over the last two decades. An increasing reliance on groundwater may not be a sustainable path for continued economic growth and development. The DNR is establishing three pilot groundwater management areas (GWMA) to help improve groundwater appropriation decisions and help groundwater users better understand and plan for future groundwater needs associated with economic development.
This project will monitor six sites within the Minnesota River Basin: Hawk Creek near Maynard, Hawk Creek near Granite Falls, Beaver Creek near Beaver Falls, Yellow Medicine River near Granite Falls, Yellow Medicine River near Hanley Falls, and Spring Creek near Hanley Falls. The sites will be monitored according to the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) Watershed Pollutant Load Monitoring Network (WPLMN) Standard Operating Procedure, which is the procedure being followed for sites currently monitored by the Hawk Creek Watershed Project.
The project will involve monitoring twelve stream sites and one lake in Jackson County. The stream sites are known to be impaired. The purpose of monitoring in multiple locations is to determine the source of the impairments.
The goal of this project is to construct, calibrate, and validate a watershed model using HSPF. RESPEC will produce a HSPF model that can readily be used to provide information to support conventional parameter TMDLs.
The goal of this project is to extend the existing HSPF models through 2012 in the Chippewa Watershed (07020005) and Hawk-Yellow Medicine Watershed (07020004) to incorporate recent monitoring data to support current MPCA business needs and sediment source investigations.
The Twin Cities metropolitan area has a rich history and connection with its waters. In an effort to keep surface waters clean, a wide variety of stormwater practices have been developed and installed throughout the metro in recent years. Many of these, such as rain gardens and infiltration basins and trenches, are intended to reduce the total runoff volume by infiltrating stormwater. Six to seven aquifers underlie the metro area and provide residents with drinking water.
In 2005, Metropolitan Council was directed to carry out regional water supply planning activities under Minnesota Statutes, section 473.1565. Working closely with the region's many water supply stakeholders and under the guidance of a metropolitan area water supply advisory committee, Metropolitan Council developed and adopted a metropolitan area master water supply plan (master plan) in 2010. The plan provides a framework for water supply planning and identifies actions needed to achieve the goal of ensuring sustainable water supplies across the region.
The Metropolitan Council, in conjunction with the University of Minnesota Technical Assistance Program (MnTAP), are exploring opportunities for water conservation by businesses in the eleven county metropolitan area. This program began by defining opportunities for water conservation for three businesses through the dedicated resources of three MnTAP interns. The interns analyzed water conservation opportunities through full time work on site over the summers of 2014 and 2015.
Funding supports an Irrigation Specialist to develop guidance and provide education on irrigation and nitrogen best management practices (BMPs). In this position, Dr. Vasu Sharma provides direct support to irrigators on issues of irrigation scheduling and soil water monitoring. She is collaborating on the development of new irrigation scheduling tools that help irrigators manage water and nitrogen resources more precisely. These tools help reduce nitrogen leaching losses in irrigated cropping systems.
Itasca SWCD will work with the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency as a collaborative effort to monitor the Big Fork River near Bigfork at State Highway 6 and Big Fork River near Craigsville at State Highway 6. Itasca Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) staff will strive to capture the peak, rising, and falling limbs of the hydrograph for spring run-off and significant storm events as well as base flow samples. Itasca SWCD staff will utilize local rain gauge readers, storm tracking weather services, and historical stage data to aid in making monitoring judgments.
The Koochiching County SWCD staff will collect water chemistry and field parameters at specific times to determine amount of contaminant load into each stream. These sites will coincide with locations where stream flow data is also being collected. This project will focus on watershed load monitoring in both the Big Fork and Little Fork River watersheds.
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.
The Little Fork River Watershed Assessment will include the waters of the Rice River, Little Fork River, Flint Creek, Nett Lake River, Beaver Brook, Valley River, Willow River, Sturgeon River, Bear River, Dark River, and the Lost River. This Assessment will also include Little Bear Lake, Bear Lake, Thistledew Lake, Little Moose Lake, Raddison Lake, Napoleon Lake, Owen Lake, Dark Lake, Clear Lake, Long (Main) Lake, Dewey Lake, and Long (North) Lake. These lakes and streams are found throughout the Little Fork River Watershed, which spans parts of Koochiching, St. Louis and Itasca Counties.
This project will reduce sediment and nutrient loading to the main stem and local tributaries of the Lower Minnesota River (LMR) by providing cost share for practices that treat ravine headcut and channel erosion, streambank/shoreline erosion, ephemeral gully erosion, and direct-discharging open inlet drainage systems. Targeted Best Management Practices (BMPs) will include but not be limited to grade control structures, grassed/lined waterways, water & sediment control basins, shoreline/streambank stabilization and alternative tile inlets.
This project will establish a groundwater monitoring network in the 11 county metropolitan area. The network will provide information about aquifer characteristics and natural water trends by monitoring healthy aquifers (non-stressed systems). The project will also develop an automated system that captures groundwater level and water use data. This system will enhance evaluation of changes in aquifers that are stressed by pumping from existing wells.
Ensuring natural resource practitioners are applying state-of-the-art approaches is the best way to achieve optimum Best Management Practice (BMP) selection, design, and placement in the landscape, thereby maximizing Clean Water Fund (CWF) benefits. To that end, it is critical to train new staff, create modeling protocols for new BMPs, refine and calibrate models, and test ever-advancing modeling applications.