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GLIN==> Conservation Minnesota debuts 'CheckMyLake.org'



Is Your Minnesota Lake Polluted? 

Conservation Minnesota Debuts New Website

With Instant Answers

 

Minnesota families who want to know if their favorite Minnesota lakes are clean enough for swimming and eating fish now have an easy way to find out – www.CheckMyLake.org.

The new website, powered by Conservation Minnesota, assembles water monitoring data on thousands of lakes collected by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) into a user-friendly database. It’s designed to help Minnesotans find out whether their favorite lakes are clean or polluted – or haven’t been tested yet.

By going to www.CheckMyLake.org, you can search by lake name or county to find out whether your lake has been tested and what the results show.

“Our 10,000 lakes define Minnesota,” said Paul Austin, Conservation Minnesota’s Executive Director. “Having information at hand on the health and safety of our lakes empowers all of us to make decisions affecting our family’s health.”  The site also empowers Minnesotans to contact state officials in support of full funding of the Clean Water Legacy program, which is designed to pay for testing and cleanup of all Minnesota’s waters.

Clean Water Legacy will require a $100 million annual investment, but the state has authorized only about $25 million annually for the 2007-2008 biennium. A House-Senate conference committee report pending in the Capitol, reportedly to be taken up early in 2008, would give voters a chance to raise the state sales tax 3/8 of a percent and earmark much of it for water cleanup.

Austin pointed out that the data at www.CheckMyLake.org does not include a new proposed list of impaired waters released by the MPCA last week. Conservation Minnesota will add the final list of polluted lakes to the site after it is made official. Data on the site now reflect the last round of testing and analysis completed in 2006.

Only about 16% of the state’s lakes and streams had been tested as of 2006, with 40% of those tested considered too polluted to meet Clean Water Act standards.

Contacts:                                                                                 
Paul Austin, Marty Broan (612.767.2444)

E-mail:  paul@conservationminnesota.org; marty@conservationminnesota.org