Contact: Alexis Donath, 651-757-2120 St. Paul, Minn. -- The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) is seeking comments on a water quality improvement report for Meadow Lake in Hennepin County. The report, known as a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL), focuses on pollution caused by excess nutrients. A public comment period begins Sept. 28, and continues through Oct. 28, 2009. Meadow Lake is a very shallow 11-acre urban lake located in the city of New Hope, which is within the Shingle Creek watershed. It is a neighborhood lake that primarily provides aesthetic values and some canoe and paddle boating opportunities. The average depth is just 1.5 feet. It is located in a residential neighborhood and also borders a park and a golf course. Meadow Lake was placed on the state's impaired waters list in 2002 because of excess nutrient levels, particularly phosphorus. Excess nutrients such as phosphorus from stormwater runoff create poor water quality conditions causing frequent summer algal blooms which limit recreational activities. The TMDL study assessed pollutant concentrations and indicated phosphorus will need to be reduced by 82 percent for Meadow Lake to meet the water-quality standard during the summer. The TMDL report is part of a nationwide effort under the federal Clean Water Act to identify and clean up pollution in streams, rivers and lakes. It is a scientific study that calculates the maximum amount of a pollutant a water body can receive, known as the "loading capacity," without exceeding water-quality standards. Every two years, states are required to submit a list of impaired waters to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). After receiving public comments, the MPCA will revise the draft Meadow Lake TMDL report and submit it to the EPA for approval. After the EPA approves the study, a plan will be developed to reduce phosphorus pollution in the lake. The Meadow Lake TMDL draft report is available at the MPCA St. Paul office at 520 Lafayette Road N. or on the Web at www.pca.state.mn.us/water/tmdl/project-meadowlake-nutrients.html. Comments may be submitted to Barb Peichel, MPCA, 520 Lafayette Road North, Saint Paul, MN 55155-4194. For more information, telephone Peichel at 651-757-2646 or toll-free at 1-800-657-3864. Written comments must include the following:
A statement of your interest in the draft TMDL report; A statement of the action you wish the MPCA to take, including specific references to sections of the draft TMDL that you believe should be changed; and Specific reasons supporting your position.
More information on the state's impaired waters list and TMDL studies is available on the Web at www.pca.state.mn.us/water/tmdl/index.html.