Upper Cannon Lakes - Excess Nutrients: TMDL Project

There are six lake basins encompassed in this project: the Jefferson-German Lake Chain (West Jefferson Lake, Middle Jefferson Lake, Swede’s Bay, East Jefferson Lake and German Lake), and Lake Volney. They are located in the far west portion of the Cannon River watershed in what is referred to as the Upper Cannon Watershed. The Jefferson-German Lake Chain is approximately seven miles south of the town of Le Center, while Lake Volney is approximately five miles east of Le Center, both in Le Sueur County. All the lakes are used for recreational activities by local residents as well as visitors and have both permanent residents and summer cabin dwellers.

Lake Volney was placed on the 303(d) impaired waters list in 2002 and the Jefferson-German Lake Chain was placed on the list in 2008. All are on the list for affecting aquatic recreation due to excess nutrients based on biological indicators. Within this study, there is a combination of deep and shallow lakes, with Middle Jefferson and Swede’s Bay being the two shallow basins. All six basins are in the Central Hardwood Forest ecoregion.

The TMDL reports were approved by EPA in September 2014.

Map and location

The lake basins are all in Le Sueur County in the upper portion of the Cannon River watershed in the greater area of the Lower Mississippi River Basin. For a map of this impairment, see the map link below or use the Impaired Waters Viewer.

PDF icon Upper Cannon Lake Map


TMDL reports and implementation plans

Other documents

Meetings and events


Information contact

Justin Watkins
Minnesota Pollution Control Agency - Rochester
507-206-2621 or justin.watkins@state.mn.us