First in series of Lake St. Croix Restoration community meetings will be June 10 in Hinckley
For release: June 9, 2009
Contact: Kayla Job, 651-757-2468
St. Paul, Minn. -- At Hinckley Elementary School, students file into bathrooms during a break to use the toilets and sinks. As they make their way back to class, wastewater from the bathrooms travels to the Hinckley wastewater treatment plant, moves through the plant, goes to the Grindstone River, down the Kettle River, and into the St. Croix River. After a 92-mile journey, the wastewater ends up into Lake St. Croix.
In Mora, homeowners manicuring their yards leave fresh grass clippings and leaves on the sidewalks. A storm rolls in, blows the leaves into the street, and washes them and the clippings into the storm sewer. The sewer carries the stormwater and the yard debris into the Snake River. The stormwater, leaves and clippings travel from the Snake River to the St. Croix River and eventually end up in Lake St. Croix.
Next to the Grindstone River, a farmer fertilizes a field. During a thunderstorm, rain washes over the land and carries some of the fertilizer into the river. From the Grindstone the runoff travels to the Kettle River and continues on via the St. Croix to Lake St. Croix.
In each of these situations, phosphorus was carried to Lake St. Croix. Phosphorus is a nutrient that plants need to grow. However, high levels of phosphorus in water can cause algal blooms that are harmful to humans, pets and our lakes, streams and rivers.
Lake St. Croix, the lower 25 miles of the St. Croix River, is an impaired water body because of excess phosphorus. The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) are working with local partners to improve the water quality of Lake St. Croix. They will hold a series of community meetings in June to get input from citizens, businesses and local units of government.
The first Lake St. Croix Restoration community meeting will be Wednesday, June 10, at Hinckley City Hall, 106 First St. S.E. The first session will run 3:30-5:00 p.m. and the second session will run 6:00-7:30 p.m. Both sessions will include a 20-minute presentation and a 10-minute question-and-answer period followed by small-group discussion.
Additional Lake St. Croix Restoration community meetings will be held on: June 16, 3:30-5:00 p.m. and 6:00-7:30 p.m. at Forest Lake City Hall, 220 N. Lake St.; June 23, 3:30-5:00 p.m. and 6:00-7:30 p.m. at Frederic High School, 1437 Clam Falls Dr., Frederic, Wis.; and June 30, 4:00-5:30 p.m. and 6:00-7:30 p.m. at Phipps Center for the Arts, 109 Locust St., Hudson, Wis.
For information about Lake St. Croix or the community meetings, contact Denise Leezer of the MPCA at 651-757-2523 or Denise.Leezer@state.mn.us; Kathy Bartilson of the WDNR at 715-635-4053 or Kathy.Bartilson@wisconsin.gov); or Randy Ferrin of the St. Croix Water Resources Planning Team at 651-433-4929 or email@example.com.