1. Stearns County Soil and Water Conservation DistrictDennis Fuchs, Administrator
2. Agenda Background Prioritizing and targeting resource concerns Feedlots and nutrient management Education and outreach Water quality Partners
3. Stearns County Population of 150,642 people 33 cities, 34 townships Ranked number one in Minnesota for: Farm receipts Milk cows Cattle and calves 860,493 total ac 3368 farms 708,284 ac farm land 527 lakes and wetlands 668 miles of rivers and streams
4. Targeting Stearns County livestock feedlots
5. Problem Feedlot Targeting Minnesota Feedlot Annualized Runoff Model (MinnFARM)  An Evaluation System to Estimate Annual Pollutant Loading and Prioritize Feedlot Pollution Potential  Developed by USDA-ARS refined by UM Proximity to surface waters Coarse textured soils Impaired waters Source Water/Wellhead Protection Area USDA-SWCD Local Work Group/SWCD Board/Water Mgmt Plan/CFO/Producer motivation further refines priorities
6. Positive Impacts Ken Konz Vegetated Treatment Area32 lbs/year of phosphorus reduced
11. Financial Programs USDA-NRCS  Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP)  Mississippi River Basin Initiative (MRBI) Board of Water and Soil Resources (BWSR)  State Cost Share  Feedlot Water Quality  Clean Water Fund EPA/MPCA 319
12. Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP)$3,000,000$2,500,000$2,000,000$1,500,000$1,000,000 $500,000 $0
14. Nutrient Management Comprehensive Nutrient Management Plan (CNMP)  EQIP provides financial incentive  SWCD/NRCS and Certified Crop Advisors provide technical assistance
15. Feedlots: Time and Money Staff time  240 hours/animal waste management system  40 hours/CNMP Cost  Site dependent  Easy fixes are done  $50,000-$250,000+ Feedlots/CNMPs: 15-20 /yr
16. Unpermitted Manure Storage Basin Investigations 319 grant pays for basin investigation  Liner integrity  Water table Targeted coarse textured soil and lakeshed areas 226 investigations completed/nearing completion Failed basins (>50%) targeted for repair or closure (NRCS)
17. Education One-on-one Field days Value of Manure workshops (UM) CCA updates Discovery Farm On Farm Network
18. Manure Management & Equipment Field Day
19. Value of Manure Workshop
20. Certified Crop Advisor/Ag Professional Training
21. Discovery Farm Program• Nick & Tara Meyer dairy farm• Includes an edge-of-fieldmonitoring of surface runoff andtile drainage water• Objective: gather water qualityinformation under real-worldconditions, providingpractical, credible, site-specificinformation to allow for betterfarm management Mark Lefebvre and Grant Pearson,decisions, supported by a better Stearns County SWCD, install the wing-understanding of the relationships wall for the flume which will be used tobetween land management and sample surface water runoffwater quality
22. On-Farm Network® Guided Corn Stalk Nitrate Test Identify management activities that will result in improved nitrogen use efficiency in corn production, thereby reducing the potential for nitrate loss to groundwater and surface water. In 2010, 16 producers implemented this practice on 52 fields in Stearns County. In 2011 over 80 fields Grant Pearson and Mark Lefebvre, Stearns County SWCD, take guided corn stalk samples after maturity for an MRBI participant to determine whether sufficient nitrogen was available to the crop.
23. Agricultural Environmental Quality Assurance A voluntary program for producers to assist producers in the assessment of their management practices for water, soil, odor & air, habitat and community image concerns Provide assurance to governmental entities/public that farms are managed to protect the environment.
24. Anaerobic Digester Pilot research demonstration on averaged sized dairy (50 to 300 cows) Reduce environmental concerns and provide economic benefits to farmers and rural communities. Funding by  (LCCMR)  NRCS Environmental Quality Linda & Jerry Jennissen Incentives Program Jer-Lindy Farms  North Fork Crow River Watershed District  Stearns County SWCD. Field Day was held for participants with over 325 people are estimated to have attended.
25. Discovery Farm Field DayJuly, 2011
26. Media, Environmental Stressors and Water Quality Trends
32. Number of Cows 70Thousands (no.) 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 1950s 2000s
33. Water Quality Trends The 2010 MPCA’s Citizen Lake Monitoring Program  4 lakes show water quality declining  22 show no water quality trends  20 show water quality improvement (In 2003, only 5 lakes showed water quality trend improvement)
34. The historical annual TP load from the Melrose SewageTreatment Plant (STP) discharge was estimated at 75mt/yr (MPCA, 1985). If it were evenly distributed acrossmonths, the May-September STP load would have been31 mt, as compared with the apparent 46 ± 10 mtreduction in the SRCL inflow load. While the differencemay not be significant in the context of uncertainties in theflow and load data, it is possible that the additional loadreduction reflected implementation of nonpoint sourcecontrols in the watershed over this same period. Thedivergence of the load vs. flow regressions at highflows shown in Figure 9 supports that hypothesisbecause nonpoint sources would be expected todominate under those conditions.- Walker, William. Development of Phosphorus TMDL for The Sauk RiverChain of Lakes, Minnesota, 2009
35. Water Quality Trends – P(Sauk River Chain of Lakes) 500 440 400Phosphorus (ppb) 300 200 177 121 100 0 1983 1995 2005 Goal 60 ppb?
36. Hoboken Creek WatershedStearns County SWCD received a grantin 2010 to identify which BestManagement Practices wouldadequately improve the quality ofrunoff from agriculture watershedswith impaired waters. The Hobokenstudy concluded that achieving the 65percent phosphorus reduction goal forthe Sauk Lake TMDL may beunattainable, even if the entirewatershed were to be planted tonative grasses.
37. PartnersUSDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Staff
38. Partners: State Agencies Board of Water and Soil Resources Minnesota Department of Agriculture Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Minnesota Pollution Control Agency Minnesota Department of Health
39. Partners Pheasants Forever (PF) Farm Bill Biologist
40. West Central Technical Service Area Staff
41. Partners NGOs Environmental Initiative Minnesota Waters The Nature Conservancy Ducks Unlimited Great River Greening Resource Conservation and Development Councils Engineering firms And many others!
42. Stearns County Commissioners
43. Stearns County SWCD 2011 Budget Total = $1,297,260$50,000 $187,260 County State $160,000 Fed $950,000 Other
44. Stearns County SWCD Board 1 2 3 4 5
45. Stearns SWCD Staff
46. Stearns County SWCD 110 2nd St. S., Suite 128, Waite Park, MN 56387 320-251-7800 #3www.StearnsCountySWCD.net