Public meeting will address Rainy Lake and Lake of the Woods watershed issues on August 10
The International Rainy-Lake of the Woods Watershed Board (IRLWWB) will meet with the public in Kenora, Ont. on August 10 to discuss issues related to the management of water quality and water levels in the 70,000 square-kilometer (27,000 square-mile) drainage basin.
Water quality continues to be a concern in the basin with the extent and severity of toxic blue-green algal blooms in 2015 on Lake of the Woods being the worst on record. Other concerns include the introduction and spread of aquatic invasive species, such as the arrival of zebra mussels in the basin headwaters in Minnesota.
In spring 2016, warmer than usual weather and above-normal rainfall resulted in an early start to the freshet and rising tributary flows. This resulted in a supplementary order, an action that allowed for an earlier rise in the water levels of Rainy and Namakan lakes to reduce the potential for low water later in the season.
The IRLWWB ensures compliance with the International Joint Commission’s (IJC) order regarding water levels in Rainy and Namakan lakes, and reports on the health of the aquatic ecosystem in the boundary waters of the Lake of the Woods and Rainy Lake watershed. It is assisted by Water Levels, Aquatic Ecosystem Health and Engagement committees, as well as a Community Advisory Group and an Industry Advisory Group.
All interested members of the public are encouraged to attend the August 10 meeting, which will be held at the Clarion Lakeside Inn at 470 First Avenue South from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
More information is available online at ijc.org/rlwwb.
Tsellers@lowwsf.com Matthew Gouin