The Duluth Streams website initially focused primarily within City of Duluth boundaries, but some of the streams that intersect Duluth originate in the surrounding communities of Hermantown and Proctor. In addition, Duluth and Superior share the St. Louis River watershed. The current project enabled us to fully expand the DuluthStreams website into a regional entity. It was built on a previous, but limited, Lake Superior Coastal Program Enhancement Fund effort to Minnesota Sea Grant at the University of Minnesota and partners that created web links to Proctor, Hermantown and Superior on the DuluthStreams website. This made these communities ideal as the first candidates for a regional expansion. As the project continued to evolve it became clear from discussions within the RSPT and with state agencies that there was a need to expand the focus area of the website to include the “greater Western Lake Superior” region and more specifically the Minnesota North Shore and Wisconsin South Shore in order to better manage Superior Basin water resources by supporting the mission of the RSPT regarding developing regional technical cooperation and collaboration, common educational materials, and presentation of case studies of successful stormwater designs.
Minnesota streams draining into the Lake Superior coastal zone and St. Louis River Estuary are typically sensitive, low productivity, high-quality trout streams. Some (Miller, Amity, Lester, Talmadge, French, Poplar, Brule) are currently listed on the MN Clean Water Act (303d) List of Impaired Waters - most commonly for turbidity and Fish-Hg (MPCA 2006). Steep topography and thin, erodible soils make these streams particularly sensitive to development. Effective management and remediation of these streams requires an understanding of their physical, chemical, and biological characteristics, which can only be obtained by monitoring, particularly during storm and snowmelt runoff events, when the most dramatic impacts occur. These data are critical for developing and assessing BMPs, particularly in the face of increased development in the high growth watersheds along the North Shore of Lake Superior (e.g. Anderson et al. 2003; MPCA 2000; IJC 1999). MPCA initiated long-term monitoring of 6 critical streams along the North Shore in 2002. However, MPCA has lacked the resources to install automated water quality sensors, which are needed to capture critical pollutant loading events during high flows - important for developing cost-effective remediation and mitigation strategies.
Minnesota’s Lake Superior Coastal Program; Project No. 306-03-07; Contract No. A78492
Axler, Richard P; Will, Norman; Host, George E; Henneck, Jerald; Lonsdale, David; Sjerven, Gerald; Reed, Jane; Ruzycki, Elaine; Hagley, Cynthia; Schomberg, Jesse; Carlson, Todd; Lonsdale, Marnie.
DuluthStreams heads north: Making North Shore stream data make sense to citizens and local officials.
University of Minnesota Duluth.
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