What's New

Other "What's New" pages:

Latest | 2016-17 | 2014-15 | 2012-13 | 2010-11 | 2008-09 | 2006-07 | 2004-05 | 2002-03

2008-2009 "What's New" entries:


Zebra mussel encrusted rock

The Milwaukee WI Journal Sentinel has posted
a very informative article:

15,000 reasons to worry about state's lakes:

Mussels well on their way to invading state's many lakes

"Wisconsin now has 120 inland waterways confirmed as infested with zebra mussels, though there is not a comprehensive annual survey of each lake so the actual number could be much higher."


Spotlight on the Parks

Wednesday, October 21, 6:30 pm
at Lower Chester - 15th Ave E and E 5th St

Join the Friends of the Parks Duluth and learn more about Chester Park! Along with a presentation about the historical aspects of the park, you'll meet many of the park's current stakeholders and learn of the resources available in our parks.

Get the flyer



Check out the Spring/Summer 2009 issue of the Stream-Line News.

In this issue:
  - Beach Watch Warnings
  - Hot secrets of the Chester Creek Ponds
  - A reserve to preserve: The St. Louis River Estuary
  - Targeting pollution
  - Minnesotans say "yes" to clean water and land


winter maintenance training class

Winter Maintenance with Reduced Environmental Impacts Training Class

The City of Duluth, the Regional Stormwater Protection Team (RSPT), the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MNDOT), and Fortin Consulting will host a winter maintenance training class October 14th, 2009 at the MNDOT building in Duluth from 9 AM to 1:30 PM.

One of the largest sources of sediment pollution in our lakes and rivers is runoff from streets and parking lots; much of which can be avoided with a few simple practices. This unique training session is designed for operators of heavy snow removal equipment, such as contractors and snow plow drivers. The class features innovative techniques to reduce environmental impacts created by road and street maintenance.


World Water Monitoring Day

Monitor Water Quality with Communities Worldwide

World Water Monitoring Day™ (WWMD) is an international education and outreach program that builds public awareness and involvement in protecting water resources around the world by engaging citizens to conduct basic monitoring of their local water bodies.

Register for WWMD 2009 Signing up for World Water Monitoring Day is easy. Simply visit www.WorldWaterMonitoringDay.org and click 'Participate' to learn how.


Report moose sightings

What is Happening to Moose in Northeastern Minnesota?

Hunters and wildlife watchers are seeing fewer moose in northeastern Minnesota. A scientific study shows higher than expected mortality of adult moose. Calf production is also lower than it has been in the past.

Are moose in northeastern Minnesota in trouble?

Scientists at the Natural Resources Research Institute, University of Minnesota Duluth, are teaming up with state, federal and tribal natural resource organizations to understand what is happening to moose populations in northeastern Minnesota. And they need your help.

The study team is asking people to report any moose sightings via their Web site at www.nrri.umn.edu/moose.


Watershed Central

EPA recently posted a new Web site called "Watershed Central" to help watershed organizations and others find key information they need to implement watershed approaches.

Watershed Central helps users find environmental data, watershed models, nearby local organizations, and guidance documents -- and other information depending on the task at hand. Watershed Central also contains links to watershed technical resources and funding, mapping applications to help find information specific to named watersheds, and includes a "Watershed Wiki" that users may use to collaborate. Watershed practitioners are encouraged to use this new Watershed Wiki to share tools, scientific findings, expertise, and local approaches to watershed management.

EPA's new site is located at: www.epa.gov/watershedcentral

- 8/7/09

An Exhibition of Artists' Expressions Concerning Water

Location: Army Corps of Engineers Lake Superior Maritime Visitor Center (also known as the Canal Park Maritime Museum) Canal Park, Duluth, MN

Exhibition dates & times: The Exhibit runs through August 7 during Visitor Center hours 10:00 AM - 9:00 PM. This event is free and open to the public as part of Lake Superior Day activities.

Download the press release


Celebrate Lake Superior Day!
Sunday, July 19, 2009

Individuals and families, churches and kids, communities and clubs, and businesses and industries hold activities or events that celebrate Lake Superior Day, held annually on the third Sunday in July (July 19 this year).

This year the theme "Let's Go Fly a Kite!" symbolizes clean energy sources such as wind power. Organize your group or family to fly a kite at your favorite beach or park on July 19.

Visit the Lake Superior Binational Forum web site for more information and to access downloadable materials under the heading "Lake Superior Day—July 19, 2009."


MS4 ToolkitThe CleanWaterMinnesota toolkit was designed to help you educate citizens, businesses, municipal staff and elected officials in your community about non-point source water pollution. Within this toolkit you will find sample brochures, newsletter articles, posters, videos and more to help you teach people about water resource issues. Click here


On Monday, July 6, the draft Industrial Stormwater Multi-Sector General Permit is out on public notice for comment. The permit will be on public notice through Wednesday, August 5th. You may obtain a copy of the entire permit, the supporting technical fact sheet, and information about the public notice, including how to submit a formal comment to the MPCA.

training Also, through a joint partnership with the MPCA and the University of Minnesota, there will be a workshop for permittees, consultants and interested parties to learn about present & future Industrial Stormwater Permit requirements. Held at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, the workshop will be held on July 30th, from 12:30pm-4pm. This half-day workshop is $35. Consider attending this workshop to receive an overview of permit requirements, participate in the "Identify your Sector" activity, learn about No Exposure (5-year exclusion from permit requirements), and take home a handy workbook to guide permittees on what they need to know regarding Industrial Stormwater.

Get the training brochure | Online registration


Rain barrel and compost bin

Rain Barrel and Compost Bin Truckload Sale!

Saturday, June 27, 2009
9 am to 4 pm
Lake Superior College Parking Lot

The Western Lake Superior Sanitary District and the Regional Stormwater Protection Team will host a rain barrel and composter sale on June 27th, 2009 from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm in the lower east Lake Superior College parking lot.

55 gallon SYSTERN rain barrels will be available for $50/unit (tax included, a value of over $120!) The SYSTERN can be placed under any downspout to collect water for use in yards and gardens. Each SYSTERN is designed with a screen to keep water free of debris and mosquitoes. The SYSTERN is made of 50% post consumer plastic and is a neutral tan color. The Earth Machine® compost bin will be sold for $40 (tax included a value of over $80).

Cash or check only, while supplies last. No reservations are necessary.

Download the brochure. More information is available at www.wlssd.com or by calling 218-722-3336.


The State of the Great Lakes 2009 Highlights report is now available online. The report provides an overview of the updated suite of Great Lakes indicators, which are supported by scientific information and, to the extent feasible, assessed by Great Lakes experts from Canada and the United States. The report also includes information on the changes in nearshore areas of the Great Lakes since 1996.


Great Lakes Observing System/ Large Lakes Observatory
Meteorological buoy

On 28 May, a meteorological buoy was deployed near the Duluth Water Intake, in approximately 52m of water. This is part of a larger array of instrumentation that will be deployed around Lake Superior this summer.

Again this year you can use our on-line data viewer utility to plot the data.


3rd Lake Superior Watershed Festival

Join us for the RSPT's Third Lake Superior Watershed Festival!

June 6, 2009
10 am to 4 pm
Duluth K-Mart Parking Lot

Music, Entertainment,Children's Activities and Workshops!

Call Kate at 218-723-4867 to register for a booth or for more information.


Todd Carlson (on left) receiving award

Rick Gitar, the Water Regulatory Specialist from the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, received a 2009 National Wetlands Award for State, Tribal, and Local Program Development. Rick built a successful tribal wetlands program across 44,000 acres of wetlands in Northeastern Minnesota. He is the Band's representative to the Superior Regional Stormwater Protection Team.


Rip Currents

The 2009 Great Lakes Rip Current Conference

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Lafayette Community Center 3026 Minnesota Ave. Duluth, Minn.

The 2009 Great Lakes Rip Current Conference will feature national experts on rip currents and hypothermia. They will discuss the mechanics of how, why, and where rip currents form in the Great Lakes, our ability to forecast rip current conditions, the effects of hypothermia and how cold water can affect rescues.

More Information and Registration Form


Todd Carlson (on left) receiving award

Todd Carlson (left), an Environmental Specialist with the City of Duluth Stormwater Utility and a member of the LakeSuperiorStreams team and Regional Stormwater Protection Team (RSPT) since their inception, received the 2009 Central States Water Environment Association Collection System Award in recognition of outstanding contributions in advancing collection system knowledge resulting in direct or indirect improvement in water quality. The presentation was made at their annual meeting in Chicago, IL.



The Washington Conservation District has created an educational toolkit, the MS4 Toolkit for MS4 communities.

This toolkit was designed to help educate citizens, businesses, municipal staff and elected officials in your community about non-point source water pollution.

May 2009

Lake Superior Cruises Offered

Registration opens in May for the sixth season of the award-winning View From the Lake boat trips. Water quality specialists from University of Wisconsin Extension and the University of Minnesota Sea Grant Program will board the L.L. Smith, Jr. with citizens and the research vessel's crew to explore Lake Superior.

For $20, participants will hear the latest information about the importance of forests and trees for protecting water quality and habitat. During the three-hour boat tour, participants will also collect and view samples of microscopic plants and animals from the depths, and see what the coast of Lake Superior looks like.

These educational cruises will sell out quickly. Details are available at MN Sea Grant.


river clean-up

The St. Louis River Alliance is seeking individuals and groups
to participate with its annual river clean up scheduled for
Saturday, May 16 from 9:00 am to 12:00 noon.

This year's efforts will take place along Merritt Creek, which is a tributary to the St. Louis River and is located in West Duluth.

Volunteers are asked to join this effort by coming to the Wheeler Fieldhouse, which is located at 35th Ave West and Grand Ave in Duluth.

Participants will be assigned publically owned locations along the creek from behind Wade Stadium to the area around the Wheeler Complex.

Volunteers should wear work clothes and sturdy outdoor footwear. Snacks and beverages will be provided.

Waste Management will be providing a large dumpster for the debris collected by the volunteers and WLSSD will be collecting hazardous items and recyclables.

For more information, call the St. Louis River Alliance at 733-9520.


volunteer Volunteer Stream Monitoring

The St. Louis River Alliance has begun a new season with its Volunteer Stream Monitoring Program, to determine the water quality of local streams. Three new streams have been added in 2009: Midway River, Hay Creek, and Rocky Run. Over 20 volunteers have been trained and certified to perform monitoring tasks. These activities involve using monitoring equipment to test a variety of parameters that will determine water quality as well as collecting water samples for laboratory analysis.

This program is being funded through the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency with Clean Water Legacy Act funding. The St. Louis River Alliance is partnering on this project with the Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College and Minnesota Waters.


RSPT article Regional Stormwater Protection Team efforts are the focus of 2 recent articles:

STORM: A Downhill Battle in the October 2008 edition of Municipal Sewer & Water Magazine, and

Teaming Up to Address Stormwater along Lake Superior, in the March/April 2009 edition of Coastal Services, published by the NOAA Coastal Services Center.


LSRP Lakeside Neighborhood Stormwater Runoff Reduction Project

UMD scientists, city utilities staff, and local environmental engineers have teamed up with homeowners in Lakeside to determine the best ways to reduce stormwater runoff from a Duluth residential neighborhood. This project will investigate the techniques that reduce runoff the most and their ease of maintenance for homeowners. The ultimate goal is to use what works best to reduce runoff contributing to problems in Amity Creek and other sensitive streams in the region.



We encourage you to visit CleanwaterMN.org — a website providing water quality education resources, focusing on the Twin Cities Metro Area, for stormwater educators, students, teachers, and residents.

various dates through
April 2009

Upcoming Stormwater Management and Erosion Control Workshops

The University of Minnesota Erosion and Sediment Control Program is currently accepting registrations for one and two day workshops. These workshops will meet Minnesota Pollution Control Agency Construction Permit Training Requirements. For registration forms and more information call 800-646-2282 or go to www.erosion.umn.edu.


I & I


A presentation describing the City of Duluth's
Inflow & Infiltration reduction project is now on-line.

The link is in the brown box on the right side of our I&I page.


Road Salt Symposium

8th Annual Road Salt Symposium
8:30 am - 3:00 pm, February 3rd, 2009
Earl Brown Heritage Center, Brooklyn Center, MN

Those interested in discussing the impacts of road salt and other deicers and the search for solutions to reduce these impacts are encouraged to attend this symposium.

Download the Brochure & Registration Form.   Register online.


brook trout

St. Louis County Invites Public to Provide Input to the Comprehensive County Water Management Plan

Public survey and public meetings are
available for citizens to provide input.

Get the details...


Road Salt Symposium

The Regional Stormwater Protection Team (RSPT) and Fortin Consulting invite you to attend a FREE 1/2 day training course:

"Winter Parking Lot and Sidewalk Maintenance:
Reducing Environmental Impact of Chloride.”

You will receive a clipboard, training manual, FREE LUNCH, refreshments, and the opportunity to receive Level 1 Certification “Snow and Ice Best Practices” by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency. Space is limited.

When: Jan 21, 2009 10am-2:30pm
Where: NRRI Room 435, 5013 Miller Trunk Hwy
Hermantown MN
(Old Sage Building; enter from Cirrus Rd)
RSVP: Kate Kubiak ph: 218-723-4867 or email: kate.kubiak@southstlouisswcd.org


brook trout

We have 4 new designated trout streams within the City of Duluth, bringing the total to 16.

In November, MN Administrative Rule 6264 was updated to add Merrit, Buckingham, Coffee, and Knowlton Creeks to the list.

Duluth Trout Streams


under ice sonde

Automated Stream Data Notes: July – Dec 2008

A summary of our recent stream data collection experiences.


fundraising and community service projects focused on protecting water quality

The Regional Stormwater Protection Team (RSPT) has produced a 34 page guidebook with with suggestions for a number of service and fundraising projects focused on protecting water quality.

Download it here


A multi agency "blue chip" panel released a report commissioned by EPA in 2006 to evaluate the NPDES stormwater program program and make recommendations for improvement. The 513 page report describes the history of U.S. stormwater management and regulations, and includes information on scientific and technological issues such as hydrology, geomorphology, biology, monitoring and modeling.

Download: 11 MB pdf file


Learn to be Eco-Friendly

Small-project contractors, landscapers & home re-modelers:
The Regional Stormwater Protection Team is holding a workshop on
Wednesday, October 1st, from 12-2 pm.
Learn about simple, inexpensive ways to prevent erosion and protect water quality during the construction process. And get a free lunch!

Find out more...


Effective 8/26/2008, our Poplar River real-time data station has been terminated. Hydrologic data is collected by the Minnesota DNR at a site downstream from Highway 61 and closer to the mouth of the stream at Lake Superior (Station ID: 01063003). There is presently no support for the real-time water quality sensors and no funding for manual water chemistry sampling although this will likely occur in the future in association with the Poplar River TMDL study.


Coastal Cleanup

Beach Sweep 2008

Looking for something to do on Saturday?

Why not take part in the world's largest litter cleanup!

Superior WI: from 9:00 am - 12:00 pm, volunteers will be cleaning up Barker's Island. Details
Duluth MN, and many locations up the North Shore: 10:00 am - 12:00 pm. Details


Storm Water and Erosion Control
(for NPDES Permits)

Brainerd - 9/15/08     Rochester - 9/17/08   
Medina - 9/19/08

This course is targeted for public and private agencies required to bring disturbed land and storm water management activities into compliance under the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Phase I and II permits (NPDES).

Details & Registration Info Here


Mouth of the Poplar River

Please join us for the third public meeting
focusing on the water quality of the Poplar River.
Tuesday September 16, 2008 from 7-9 pm at the
Cook County Courthouse, Grand Marais, Minnesota.

The meeting will focus on the biological sampling that the Natural Resource Research Institute (NRRI) performed as part of the Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) project and other educational topics.

For more information on the meeting contact Dave Stark at 218-428-4413 (dave@starkllc.com) or Cindy Gentz, Cook County Water Planner, at 218-387-3648 (cindy.gentz@co.cook.mn.us).

For more information and documents completed to date see our Poplar River TMDL page.


Map from the SWPPP Midway Township's proposed new Municipal Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan is now available for public review at the Midway Township Hall at the following times:

  • the first and last Thursday of each month 7-9 pm
  • Wednesday evenings 7-9 pm
  • Saturdays 8-Noon
  • by appointment at: 218-624-7081

Midway Township Hall
3230 Midway Road, Duluth, MN 55810

Read it here


Data, data, data... What's happening in western Lake Superior near Duluth's drinking water intake? See raw data within minutes, or examine it yourself with our on-line dataviewer with a short lag. This is Buoy#1, one of four being deployed by the Large Lakes Observatory at the U. of Minnesota-Duluth. Find out more about Lake Superior Research.



Flute Reed Watershed Partnership is awarded

2008 Citizen Monitoring Program of the Year!



Celebrate Lake Superior Day!
Sunday, July 20, 2008

Held every year on the third Sunday in July, Lake Superior Day is a special day that encourages people to take action that helps protect or restore one of the world's biggest freshwater lakes.

The Lake Superior Binational Forum is promoting this event. Download the flyer or visit the Forum's web site for more info.


Impaired Waters Research Symposium

This workshop brought together researchers, state decision makers, practitioners and citizen representatives to understand the current state of research in managing Minnesota's surface water and identifying gaps in information and knowledge that can be bridged through additional research. The research was divided into the four broad categories: · Setting standards and assessing waters · Total Maximum Daily Load Studies · Implementation · Effectiveness Monitoring.


Lake Superior Cruises Offered Registration is open for the fifth season of the award-winning View From the Lake boat trips. Water quality specialists from University of Wisconsin Extension and the University of Minnesota Sea Grant Program will board the L.L. Smith, Jr. with citizens and the research vessel's crew to explore Lake Superior. For $20, participants will hear the latest information about the importance of forests and trees for protecting water quality and habitat. During the three-hour boat tour, participants will also collect and view samples of microscopic plants and animals from the depths, and see what the coast of
Lake Superior looks like. These educational cruises sell out quickly. Registration is available at www.seagrant.umn.edu/vfl or by calling Minnesota Sea Grant at (218) 726-8106. A total of 26 trips are scheduled for the following ports (visit the Web site for trip times or download the VFL invitation).


The Minnesota Environmental Partnership’s North Shore Watershed Watch program will be building a rain garden on June 4, 5 and 6th and will host a public open house and planting on Saturday June 7th.  The rain garden will be located at the Anderson House (the location of the Superior Hiking Trail Association), at 731 7th Avenue in Two Harbors.  The purpose of the project is to provide a visible model that will provide citizens and decision-makers with landscaping practices that minimize stormwater runoff.

On Saturday, June 7th from 10:00 AM to Noon the public is invited to help plant the garden and get information on how to construct a rain garden on their property.

See the news release for more information.


Tips for Managing Excess Water on Your Property

Come learn how to deal with nuisance ponding or excess water on your property from sump pump discharge or challenging topography or soils.

Sunday, May 18, 1-2 pm
Engwall's Greenhouse
4749 Hermantown Rd.

Learn more...

5/15/08 Go to CheckMyLake to find out if your lake has been tested by the state for recreational suitability and/or fish contamination.



Superior Streams Partner Program

New billboards

If you're driving on Trinity Rd./Hwy 53 just north of Arlington Ave. or in Proctor at Hwy. 2 and Boundary Ave you will pass a billboard promoting the
Superior Streams Partner Program.

Find out what it's all about...



Data Visualization

We're collecting data again -- the Kingsbury Creek sonde was deployed today, and the data should be posted soon. The Tischer Creek sonde has been running for about 2 weeks.


Stream-Line News

The Spring 2008 issue of the Stream-Line News is ready.

In this issue:
  - Can you make a difference for cleaner streams?
  - Beyond rain barrels
  - Lessons learned from Miller Creek
  - Bank stabilization project


Download the interpretive trail brochure - 2.2 MB pdf

The Miller Creek Interpretive Trail

Fall 2007 - Lake Superior College created a beautiful scenic trail in the ravine behind the college. It's a loop less than a mile long and connects 14 sites of ecologic and geologic interest.

Download a map of the trail - 836 KB pdf

Sites have numbered sign posts and the brochure provides natural history and natural resource stewardship information for each site. LSC will install a monitoring station in Spring 2008 that will allow website users to explore runoff and water quality in comparison to other regional streams.    

Download: Trail Brochure / Map



Erosion and Sediment Control 2008 Workshop

Erosion and Sediment Control:
2008 Construction Stormwater NPDES Permit Workshop

Hermantown Public Safety Building
Friday February 29, 2008
9:00 AM - 1:00 PM

Cost: $10    Lunch included

Get more details and a registration form.


Details - 324 KB pdf

Saturday, Feb 23, 2008
10:00am to 4:00pm

DON'T FLUSH unwanted or expired
medication down the drain. Bring it
to WLSSD's second collection event!

Western Lake Superior Sanitary District
Household Hazardous Waste Facility
2626 Courtland St., Duluth, MN 55806
Brochure with map (324 KB pdf)       More info at the WLSSD website.



Miller Creek Watershed Informational Lunch

Businesses in the Miller Creek Watershed are invited to a

Thursday, February 21st
11:45 am - 1:00 p.m.
Country Inn and Suites
4257 Haines Rd.

Details & Registration

  Low Impact Design Practices

Low Impact Design practices reduce capital cost $$$$ and reduce environmental impacts.

An analysis of 17 case studies provides information to cities, counties, states, private-sector developers and others on the costs and benefits of using Low Impact Development (LID) strategies and practices to help protect and restore water quality. LID practices reduce stormwater runoff and are increasingly being used by communities across the country to help protect and restore water quality.

EPAEPA. 2007. Reducing Stormwater Costs through Low Impact Development (LID) Strategies and Practices. Publication Number EPA 841-F-07-006, December 2007.

2008 Road Salt Symposium

7th Annual Road Salt Symposium
8:30 am - 3:30 pm, February 5th, 2008
Crowne Plaza, Brooklyn Center, MN

Those interested in discussing the impacts of road salt and other deicers
and the search for solutions to reduce these impacts are encouraged to
attend this symposium.

Download the Brochure & Registration Form.


Digging out the Chester Creek sondeWe pulled the last sonde from the streams today.

They were in danger of freezing solid.

The sondes will receive routine maintenance, and several of the units need to get upgraded to digital modems.

They will be returned when the freeze danger has passed -- probably in late March.

(Our camera froze, so this picture is from last year's extraction at Chester Creek.)

Lake Superior Watershed Road Signs

Welcome to the Watershed

Drivers along northern Minnesota’s roads may notice new signs welcoming visitors and residents to the Lake Superior Watershed. Over twenty signs have been placed on 10 state highways and 11 county roads in St. Louis, Carlton, Lake, Pine, Aitkin, and Itasca counties.

Purchase and installation of the signs were coordinated by Minnesota Pollution Control Agency staff with funding from the Lake Superior Binational Program and the Lakewide Management Plan.

  More info

Think Green

Recycle any Sony product for free with the Sony Take Back Recycling Program.

Bring your unwanted Sony product to any participating Waste Management eCycling
drop-off center and recycle it for free. The nearest location in the Twin Ports is in Superior WI.

Winter Parking Lot and Sidewalk Management Workshop

Winter Parking Lot and Sidewalk Maintenance Workshop
Wednesday, January 9, 2008 from 10:00-2:30
at the University of Wisconsin - Superior

The Regional Stormwater Protection Team and the City of Superior are once again hosting a free half-day workshop for area parking lot and sidewalk managers.

Attendees will gain practical advice on how to make better proactive, cost-effective choices in winter parking lot and sidewalk management. 

Key topics include: best practices to keep parking lots and sidewalks safe and reduce environmental impacts; responsible application techniques; and selecting and using materials.

Don’t miss this great opportunity! Here are more details.

Other "What's New" pages:

Latest | 2016-17 | 2014-15 | 2012-13 | 2010-11 | 2008-09 | 2006-07 | 2004-05 | 2002-03