Clearwater Soil and Water Conservation District
 
Clearwater Soil & Water Conservation District
 

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Clean Water, Land and Legacy Grant Accomplishments

In recent years Clearwater SWCD has applied for and won three competitive Clean Water Fund grants. This funding was made possible by the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment approved by Minnesota voters in 2008.

The Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources awarded our district these grants in order to protect the soil and waters of Clearwater County. More about all Clean Water Fund grants is available at the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Stories webpage. Specific information about each of the grants awarded to Clearwater SWCD is below.

Lost River Watershed Runoff Reduction (2012)

The first element serves agricultural producers near the Lost River. The grant funds cost sharing for landowners to install specialized culverts, called side water inlets, on fields adjacent to eligible streams and ditches. These structures allow for drainage while reducing gullies. Side water inlets save producers and communities time and money by keeping soil out of ditches and other waterbodies downstream.

Another component of this grant funds protection of Pine Lake. Financial assistance will be available to lakeshore owners to protect their properties by installing naturalized shoreline buffers with native wildflowers, grasses, shrubs and trees. For those sites needing more protection, rock rip rap or landscaping logs may be used. These practices stabilize vulnerable shoreline, filter out pollutants and reduce the erosion that otherwise harms a lake’s health.

Clean Water Story - Lost River Watershed Runoff Reduction

FY2012 Clean Water Fund Outcomes - Lost River Watershed Runoff Reduction

It's All in the Timing: Expanding Lake Protection Screening Reports (2012)

Monitoring local lake water quality is an important component of conservation. Grant monies have funded water quality studies on three county lakes. Good data from studies like these informs sound water protection practices and planning.

Click on the following links for the results of these Lake Protection Screening Reports: Long Lake, Long Lost Lake and Walker Brook Lake.

The remainder of this grant supports the revision and distribution of the Clearwater County Shoreland Homeowner’s Guide to Lake Stewardship. Clearwater SWCD and Clearwater County Environmental Services staff have collaborated to update this important resource for local lakeshore owners. This guide contains tips to protect fishing, swimming, shoreline stability and water quality on area lakes.

Read the revised Clearwater County Shoreland Homeowner’s Guide to Lake Stewardship here or call our office to get a copy.

Clean Water Story - It's All in the Timing: Expanding Lake Protection Screening Reports

FY12 Clean Water Fund Outcomes - Lake Protection Screening Reports

Protecting the Clearwater River Watershed through Buffers and Other Best Management Practices (2013)

Through this grant Clearwater SWCD will work with agricultural producers to protect public waters from pollution and erosion. Specifically, we will install vegetated borders along Judicial Ditch 72 to stabilize the ditch banks and keep soil and nutrients in the fields where they belong. By preventing this soil and chemical runoff, we protect the Lost River and all other waters downstream. These investments also save money by reducing the amount of maintenance needed in public drainage ditches.

In addition, we will use funds to protect critical lakeshore, streams and wetland sites by reducing adjacent agricultural impacts and installing native plants. These vegetative buffers will reduce E. coli contamination and other pollution in the water and stabilize shorelines. Enhancing these areas with native grasses, trees and shrubs will protect sensitive shoreline ecosystems and improve wildlife habitat.

Finally, we will use these grant funds to install physical improvements to fields and ditches in the Clearwater River Watershed. By installing specialized drainage structures (side water inlets) on field borders, we will prevent unnecessary soil loss. To address head-cutting, bank failure and eroding field edges, we will stabilize targeted ditch areas with additional rocks and grading.

We will partner with the Red Lake Watershed District on several of these projects. Through this collaboration we will be able to offer landowners incentives and financial assistance to adopt these best management practices and, on some sites, protect these areas with easements.  

 
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312 Main Avenue North, Suite 3  ~ Bagley, Minnesota 56621 ~ 218.694.6845
 
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