Comment period extended on draft studies that recommend Bois de Sioux River Watershed water quality improvements, protection

Contact: Dan Olson, 218-846-8108

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency’s (MPCA) public comment period for two draft Bois de Sioux River Watershed water quality documents has been extended to provide more opportunity for public input. The new deadline ends June 4, 2018, at 4:30 p.m.

The studies found that Bois de Sioux River Watershed water pollution is linked to land alterations designed to promote soil drainage, such as stream channelization and ditching. These activities also impair stream habitat, water quality, and fish and aquatic insect communities.

The majority of land in the Bois de Sioux River Watershed is privately owned. While landowners in the Bois de Sioux River Watershed have long been engaged in good land stewardship practices, the MPCA and its partners recommend they continue to build upon best management practices known to improve water quality. The agency and its partners also recommend that all Minnesotans take steps to improve public understanding and interest in protecting water quality.

The draft Bois de Sioux Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) Study and Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy (WRAPS) reports recommend actions that can address existing problems and prevent new ones.

The TMDL study quantifies the pollutant levels, identifies pollution sources, and proposes source goals to return water quality to an acceptable level. In contrast, the WRAPS report identifies impaired water bodies and those in need of protection, and identifies actions needed to achieve and maintain water quality.

The draft study and report are available on the MPCA's Bois de Sioux River webpage. The reports may also be reviewed at the MPCA Detroit Lakes office at 714 Lake Avenue, Suite 220.

Comments on the draft reports should be sent to Cary Hernandez, 714 Lake Avenue, Suite 220, Detroit Lakes, MN 56501; by email, cary.hernandez@state.mn.us, or by phone, 218-846-8124. Comments must be received by 4:30 p.m. on June 4, 2018. More information is also available from Jamie Beyer, Bois de Sioux River Watershed District administrator, 320-563-4185, or bdswd@frontiernet.net.

Written comments must include a statement of your interest in the Bois de Sioux watershed study and/or report, a statement of the action you wish the MPCA to take, including specific references to sections of the draft study and/or report you believe should be changed, and specific reasons for your position.