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February 25 2013 12:12

MPCA seeks comments on water quality improvement report for Benton Lake

Contact: Alexis Donath, 651-757-2312

St. Paul, Minn. — The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) has released a draft water quality improvement report for Benton Lake, and is inviting the public to review and comment on the report.

Benton Lake, located in Carver County, west of the Twin Cities metropolitan area, is polluted with excess phosphorus. While phosphorus is an essential nutrient for algae and plants, too much phosphorus can produce frequent summer algal blooms, which interfere with fishing, boating and being able to enjoy the aesthetics of Benton Lake.

The MPCA report, which is known as a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL), outlines a “pollution diet” for Benton Lake. Specifically, the report indicates that phosphorus levels in the lake will need to be reduced by 74 to 79 percent for the lake to meet state water-quality standards.

Benton Lake is located within the Carver Creek Lakes area. The Benton Lake draft TMDL report can be viewed on the Carver Creek Lakes TMDL page,

For more information or to submit comments, contact Chris Zadak (email chris.zadak@state.mn.us; phone 651-757-2837), MPCA, 520 Lafayette Rd N, Saint Paul, MN 55155-4194. Comments must be received in writing at the MPCA office by March 27, 2013. They must include an explanation of the commenter’s interest in the TMDL report, a clear statement of any recommended changes (including references to specific sections of the report), and specific reasons for any suggested changes.

The report is part of a nationwide effort under the federal Clean Water Act to identify and clean up pollution in streams, rivers and lakes. The purpose of a TMDL study is to quantify the pollution reductions necessary to bring an impaired water body into compliance with water quality standards. After receiving feedback from the public and from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, a detailed plan will be developed to reduce phosphorus pollution in Benton Lake.

 

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