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Crookston Times - Crookston, MN
  • Watershed district flood projects featured at Ag Water Issues Forum

  • Three watershed district members of the Red River Watershed Management Board participated in a panel discussion about what local watersheds are doing to meet basin-wide goals for flood damage reduction in the Red River Valley.
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  •     Three watershed district members of the Red River Watershed Management Board participated in a panel discussion about what local watersheds are doing to meet basin-wide goals for flood damage reduction in the Red River Valley.     
        The panel was part of the 3rd Annual Minnesota Ag Water Issues Forum held at the Jim Kukowski Farm in Strathcona on July 16th.       
        The panel included Tracy Halstensgard (Roseau River Watershed District), Dan Money (Two Rivers Watershed District) and Nick Drees (Middle-Snake-Tamarac Rivers Watershed District).      
        They reviewed water management projects in their districts, explained how local flood damage reduction projects are developed and implemented, and encouraged landowners to get involved in water issues and participate in the Project Team process.  The panel also answered questions about retention, tiling and ditch systems.     
        John Finney, president of the Red River Watershed Management Board provided a history of flood damage reduction efforts in the Valley and explained the role water retention plays in achieving the 20 percent flow reduction goal for the Red River Basin.   
        Don Baloun, state conservationist with the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) reviewed what has been accomplished through NRCS funding and said there is no “silver bullet” for flood damage reduction.  He discussed retention, wetlands mitigation banks, Conservation Partnerships, funding for drain tile control structures and other components of the new Farm Bill.   
        The Forum was sponsored by the MN Farm Bureau Federation and Northwest Minnesota County Farm Bureaus, the MN Agricultural Water Resource Center, the MN Association of Wheat Growers, Red River Valley Sugar Beet Growers, MN Corn Growers Association and the MN Soybean Growers Association.

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