Mike Kennedy, Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, leads a discussion at the breakout session at the Binational Lake Association Event in 2018 Credit: Kelli SaundersMedia Release:

(Kenora, ON and International Falls, MN) September 13, 2019).  Lake Associations in the Rainy-Lake of the Woods watershed will gather September 19 at a workshop organized by the Foundation's Kelli Saunders.  Featured speakers include: professor Matt Julius, St. Cloud State University; Shannon Martin Minnesota Pollution Control Agency; and Kat Kavanaugh with the nonprofit Water Rangers.   Please register by Sunday, September 15, at lowwsf.com/register.

T3 IJCMeeting

August 15, 2019 in Treaty 2 Territory, Leadership from the Anishinaabe Nation of Treaty #3 and technical support staff met with International Joint Commission (IJC) Commissioners and staff at Prairie Firehouse in Brandon, MB.

An account of this important meeting as well as details of the Treaty #3 Nibi (water) Declaration is available in the pdf August edition of Treaty 3 News (602 KB) .

 

Based on the latest scientific information, the U.S. EPA has established recommended water concentrations, at or below which protects public health, for the cyanotoxins microcystins (8 micrograms per liter) and cylindrospermopsin (15 micrograms per liter). EPA’s recommendations are protective of all age groups and are based on peer-reviewed and published science.

https://www.epa.gov/newsreleases/epa-issues-recommendations-recreational-water-quality-criteria-and-swimming-advisories

A must see for all!
Lake of the Woods: A History by Water

Lake of the Woods: Eastern Shores

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. 

Several 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!

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:

 

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. 

Adam Heathcote collects a suspended sediment sample from a buoy station on Lake of the Woods.Phosphorus, algae’s favorite food, should be quickly buried by inches of mud year over year.  Perhaps, somehow, the phosphorus that had entered the lake during the paper and population booms of the mid-twentieth century is being recycled?  Could it be that the turbulent waters of Lake of the Woods south basin (the Big Traverse) are combining with short periods of temperature stratification (when the cold bottom waters of a lake do not mix with the warmer water above) to deplete oxygen and draw nutrients back up from the sediments. Particularly windy days could then mix nutrient rich particles of sediment throughout the water column, allowing pollution from many years ago to be reused over and over again. In this article from the Field Notes - Stories from the St. Croix Watershed Research Station of the Science Museum of Minnesota the story unfolds of research seeking to answer these questions and gain insights into what causes the algae problems plaguing Lake of the Woods.