Anoka County supports groundwater sustainability and economic vitality

Anoka County supports efforts for groundwater sustainability and economic vitality. The Anoka County Board of Commissioners has passed a legislative platform resolution in support of principles that protect our water resources while maintaining our growing economic vitality. Points in Anoka County’s position include:

  • Anoka County’s future economic vitality is dependent on maintaining an environment that supports vigorous communities;
  • A community that is vital and sustainable is of greater value to individuals and businesses;
  • Pristine natural features such as clean lakes and land enhance the value of a community.

Management and protection of Anoka County’s natural resources are necessary to maintain healthy and vital communities. An important local landscape feature is the “Anoka Sand Plain” (named after the county for which it is most prominent) that acts as a primary groundwater recharge zone to aquifers used for water supply throughout the metropolitan area.

Recently, the Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) designated a north and east zone of the metropolitan area (including part of Anoka County) as a Groundwater Management Area, or GWMA. The GWMA designation is in response to lowering water levels in White Bear Lake that has been attributed to excessive pumping from large capacity (including municipal) wells. In recent years, concern has also been expressed over the lower levels of Bunker, Crooked and Itasca lakes in Anoka County. The DNR will address managing water use within the GWMA through focused evaluation, conservation education and sustainable groundwater use.

The Anoka County Board of Commissioners joins with others in support of: Taking action toward results which will lead to groundwater sustainability, while balancing groundwater management with the community economic development vitality efforts. In addition, Anoka County will continue to be an engaged stakeholder in the DNR’s efforts regarding White Bear Lake and the new Groundwater Management Area.

The Know The Flow website is an example of Anoka County’s approach to managing water resources through coordination between county, city and watershed management agencies. The Anoka County Water Resources Management Report (October, 2009) provides agencies with a framework for cooperation in protection and management of water resources.

For more information contact Anoka County Environmental Services at 763-422-7063.

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