Public Engagement Opportunity - Monday July 8 in Kenora

Get involved and have your say about water quality objectives for Lake of the Woods!

The IJC Watershed Board is developing recommendations for international objectives for water quality and aquatic ecosystem health.

Please attend one of the IJC public engagement meetings:

July 8th - Clarion Lakeside Inn, Kenora

  • 2:30 - 4:00 pm (immediately following the Lake of the Woods District Stewardship Association Summer Meeting)
  • Or 6:30 - 8:00 pm

For an explanation of how Objectives and Alerts are used in boundary waters click here.

For further information on these meetings, please contact:
Kelli Saunders, Project Coordinator, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 807-548-8002

IJC logo with white space 240At a meeting of the International Joint Commission (IJC), Canadian Commissioners Pierre Béland, Merrell-Ann Phare and F. Henry Lickers made a solemn declaration to faithfully and impartially perform the duties assigned under the Boundary Waters Treaty.  Also announced was that the appointments of Jane Corwin as US Section chair, and Robert Sisson and Lance Yohe as US Section Commissioners has been confirmed by the US Senate.

Read the full announcements:


Kelli Saunders, LOWWSF International Watershed Coordinator, digs into our waters of Lake of the WoodsKelli Saunders, the Foundation's International Watershed Coordinator has a weekly column in the the Lake of the Woods Enterprise newspaper and online at the Kenora Daily Miner News.  This feature series will celebrate the importance of water locally and the great efforts collectively to protect it,  will be dedicated to water throughout the summer months – its quality, its governance, its future and how we can all help to preserve it. 

The first two articles are online now - click the Read more (below) for the links and look to the Lake of the Woods Enterprise newspaper and Kenora Daily Miner News Online for weekly updates!

thumb bev coreIn this article, Bev Clark takes a look at what we've learned about Lake of the Woods from some of the key science published in the 2017 special issue of the Journal of Lake and Reservoir Management that was devoted entirely to Lake of the Woods.  How has the lake changed? Are we still paying for our past sins from phosphorus pollution built up in the lake bottom? And what role does climate change have?


Fibre mats in the Rainy River downstream of the mills, 1952The history of the Rainy River is fascinating. How could it not be with voyageurs and lumberjacks all tangled up in it. The overlooked part of any history lesson, however, is often the timeline of environmental insults that occurred in concert with the industrial revolution and the population of the land and exploitation of its resources.

In this article, Bev Clark explores the history of the pollution and subsequent research and cleanup of the Rainy River as an example that shows what coordinated international efforts engaging the IJC can achieve. 

MN TMDL cvrMinnesota’s plan to cut phosphorus entering Lake of the Woods was submitted to US EPA for review last fall as the first step in the approval process. The MPCA is currently responding to the federal review, prior to taking the plan forward through a formal public consultation period, anticipated for later this summer. We’ll keep you informed via the Foundation’s website and e-news about progress on the Minnesota plan and opportunities for public input.

Watch for word coming out for public meetings in Minnesota (International Falls, Baudette and Warroad) and a WebEx online conference for folks in Canada and others who cannot attend in person.

sat indicatorsThe satellite view from space is compelling of blue green algae blooms covering Lake of the Woods. Dr. Caren Binding of ECCC is harnessing these images for near real-time tracking of algae blooms and to develop indices of bloom severity, intensity, extent and duration. These indices may prove to be very useful in monitoring and measuring the effectiveness of efforts to cutting phosphorus to reduce harmful algae blooms.

Profiles of this project and the other science projects underway by Environment and Climate Change Canada on Lake of the Woods are available at the Foundation’s website:

2019 Proceedings cvrThe pdf Proceeedings Report of the 2019 International Rainy-Lake of the Woods Watershed Forum (13.11 MB) is now available.

Lake of the Woods and its watershed went under the microscope again at the 2019 International Rainy-Lake of the Woods Watershed Forum, March 13-14 at the Rainy River Community College in International Falls, Minnesota.

The Report on the Forum features 34 presentations during the two-day symposium and posters sessions. There were focus session on: binational updates, federal Canadian science, ecosystem studies at the Experimental Lakes Area, and management implications of research completed over the past decade.