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Superior, Douglas County launch watershed planning effort

The city of Superior and Douglas County kick off a watershed planning process Wednesday at the Lake Superior Estuarium, 3 Marina Drive.

An open house addressing watersheds including the Nemadji, Black, Pokegama and St. Louis rivers runs 4-7 p.m.

This is the start of a yearlong process to develop a plan for managing efforts to both improve water quality in degraded areas and to protect overall watershed health, according to Andrea Crouse, water resources specialist with the Superior Environmental Services Division.

The city is working with the Douglas County Land and Water Conservation Department to incorporate the nine required elements for watershed plans to be eligible for state and federal implementation funds. Watershed plans consistent with the Environmental Protection Agency’s nine key elements and provide a framework for improving water quality in a holistic manner within a geographic watershed. The nine elements help assess the contributing causes of nonpoint source pollution, involve key stakeholders and prioritize restoration and protection strategies to address water quality problems.

A critical component of the process is to build partnerships with stakeholders to identify and address issues of concern, Crouse said in a prepared statement

Refreshments are provided and everyone is welcome to attend the free event for a few minutes or the whole time. Ask questions about the planning process, learn about the state of the watersheds and find out how to get involved, Crouse said.

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