News

WDNR Approves Erosion Grant

PROJECT DESCRIPTION - BRIEF

 

Dunn County-Red Cedar Erosion/Habitat Project-Funded by WDNR

October 1, 2013 – June 30, 2014

 

A. DESCRIPTION OF PROJECT AREA

 

This project area is located in Dunn County, WI on the Red Cedar River upstream of Lake Tainter. This planning grant continues the work of a 2005 study sponsored by the Tainter Menomin Lake Improvement Association (TMLIA) that identified 58 eroding and sediment producing streambanks on this 30.32 mile section of river in the Towns of Colfax, Grant, Sand Creek and Tainter.   

 

In 2005 staff from the Dunn County Land Conservation Division (LCD) inventoried this entire section of the river and recorded specific details including GPS coordinates, length, height on each eroding bank and estimated sediment load.  The UW-Eau Claire Geography Department measured lake depths at 20,000 points and created a new bathymetric map of Lake Tainter.  The new map was compared with a 1960 map to determine that nearly 2.7 million yards of sediment was deposited in Lake Tainter over a 45 year period.  This equates to the loss of 1667 acre feet of water that is not available for habitat, recreation or navigation.  Along with this loss, associated phosphorus and pollutants continue to flow into the Red Cedar River.

 

This planning grant represents the first phase in developing natural engineering solutions to remediate the erosion sites on the Red Cedar River and improve habitat.  A Project Management Team will oversee and seek funding for the long-term remediation of the 58 eroding and sediment producing sites.  This grant will be used to hire a consultant, Inter-Fluve (www.Inter-Fluve.com) to study and evaluate the dynamics of the river, develop conceptual designs for non-traditional solutions that will stabilize the eroding banks and restore the aquatic ecosystems of the Red Cedar River and Lake Tainter.  Inter Fluve will also be responsible for developing an implementation plan for the project.  

 

B. DESCRIPTION OF PROBLEM TO BE ADDRESSED BY PROJECT

 

To date, none of the 58 erosion sites have been addressed or resolved.  These sites continue to discharge large amounts of sediment, associated phosphorus and other pollutants into the Red Cedar River above Lake Tainter.  Since 2005, extensive deposits of sediment, phosphorus and pollutants continue to flow into Lake Tainter and contribute to the unsafe, impaired condition of Tainter Lake and Lake Menomin.  These conditions also contribute to the further decline of habitat along this stretch of the river.  In a review of conditions in upper Lake Tainter in July of 2013, the sediment deposits now threaten the use of Champney Park boat landing, private waterfront shoreland, habitat, navigation, and recreation on Tainter Lake.  

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Mark your calendars for the TMLIA annual meeting Saturday, October 21st from 10 am-1 pm at Olde Towne Banquet Hall (903 Cedar Falls Rd., Menomonie).  All are welcome, and breakfast and childcare are provided!  There will be awards, activities, and good conversation.  Hope to see you there :)

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