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Monday, February 6 • 1:40pm - 2:00pm
Technical Session. Monitoring and Assessing Minnesota's Water Resources

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AUTHORS: Benjamin Lundeen, Scott Niemela - Minnesota Pollution Control Agency

ABSTRACT: In 2006, the Minnesota legislature passed into law the clean water legacy amendment then in 2008, the citizens voted to increase funding for clean water through a sales tax increase known as the Minnesota’s clean water fund.  The fund provided resources to monitor, assess, and develop strategies for restoration and protection of waterbodies in each of Minnesota’s 80 watersheds.  To date the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA), and its partner organizations have monitored and assessed 60 watersheds for support of aquatic life, recreation and consumption through what is known as the intensive watershed monitoring (IWM) approach.  Following the monitoring effort, the MPCA is tasked with identifying key stressors that are affecting water quality and deriving a plan known as a Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy (WRAPS) for improving water quality throughout the watershed.  Both processes work in concert with one another to provide information about the condition of waterbodies within each watershed every 10 years.  Since the passing of the CWLA the MPCA has monitored over 4200 stations for biology (fish & macroinvertebrates), 700 stations for routine water chemistry and bacteria, and over 1000 lakes for aquatic recreation.  The monitoring results have been used to conduct 3700 stream and 4200 lake assessments.  Engaging the public and local units of government have been crucial to the success of this effort and to the sustainability of Minnesota’s water resources.  This presentation will provide an overview of the programs and challenges facing the sustainability of water resources in Minnesota.

Monday February 6, 2017 1:40pm - 2:00pm CST
Grand Ballroom C