Published on Wednesday, 30 November -0001 00:00
Middle Spunk Lake benefits from Community Water Improvement Project
Spring has this unique power to motivate and rejuvenate us after a long Minnesota winter; and this winter was definitely long. As the robins begin to arrive and the snow and ice vanish from Middle Spunk Lake, efforts begin to move forward on the Middle Spunk Lake Improvement Project.
The Middle Spunk Lake project, funded in part through the Clean Water Legacy Amendment, is a partnership between local residents, Avon Area Lakes Association, City of Avon, Initiative Foundation and Stearns County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) to improve the waters of Middle Spunk Lake by implementing individual landowner water improvement efforts or best management practices (BMPs) on individual lots. What makes this project unique is that the water improvement benefits of a single individual effort is magnified by numbers; several residents working together to make an even bigger difference in the health of Middle Spunk Lake.
With the technical assistance of a local engineering firm, approximately 41 raingardens will be installed in the Stratford Addition this spring to decrease the amount of stormwater runoff directly entering Middle Spunk Lake. Polluted stormwater runoff transports excess nutrients to our lakes, rivers and streams and is the leading cause of water quality decline within the state of Minnesota. "If we can control the quantity and quality of water entering our lakes, rivers and streams we can solve the majority of Minnesota's surface water problems. This project is a step in that direction" commented Greg Berg, Shoreland Specialist with the Stearns County SWCD who has been instrumental in implementing this project within the City of Avon.
Raingardens capture and filter polluted stormwater. They are small depressions strategically placed on the landscape designed with modified soils that allow for water to soak quickly back into the ground, normally less than 24 hours, and can be planted with native plants to make them both environmentally and aesthetically pleasing. This effort alone will reduce annual stormwater runoff by approximately 60 percent and excess nutrients (phosphorus) by 15.9 pounds per year from entering Middle Spunk Lake. That is equivalent to over 7,900 pounds of unwanted algae.
Are you interested in implementing a raingarden in your yard? Do you need the technical or financial assistance to get started? If so, contact the Stearns County SWCD office at 320-251-7800 ext 3. Technical and financial assistance is available to Stearns County property owners who are interested in implementing best management practices for the conservation of our soil and water resources.