Thursday, December 27, 2012

City of Inver Grove Heights Honored as Community Conservationists

The Minnesota Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts (MASWCD) and Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) have named the City of Inver Grove Heights as their 2012 Community Conservationists. The award was announced at the 76th MASWCD Annual Meeting, held Dec. 2-4 at the Doubletree by Hilton Bloomington - Minneapolis South. The city was nominated for the award by Dakota SWCD. 

Since 2004, the MPCA and MASWCD have partnered to offer the Community Conservationist Award. The award provides SWCD's with the opportunity to nominate an individual, business, company, municipality, or organization for concern, cooperation, or implementation of conservation practices in a community environment. 

The City of Inver Grove Heights has been a leader in stormwater management over the past several years. Here are just a few of their accomplishments. 

  • They adopted one of the most innovative zoning ordinances in the State of Minnesota. This ordinance requires stormwater be managed on site through the use of infiltration, storage and reduction of impervious cover such as roads and parking areas. 
  • The City routinely monitors their stormwater system, including stormwater ponds, to ensure the system functions at its intended capacity. By reducing stormwater runoff volumes from developed sites the City better controls soil loss and sediment movement to surface waters. 
  • The City has partnered with the Dakota SWCD to retrofit many conservation projects. To date, the City has installed over 45 curb side raingardens, 2 native gardens, a 3,350 square foot bioinfiltration cell and a stormwater treatment system since 2008. 
  • The City keeps its residents involved and informed about the abundance of surface water resources and the role each homeowner plays in water quality. In association with the Lower Mississippi River Watershed Management Organization and the Dakota SWCD, annual workshops are held to provide residents information on what they can do to assist with improving water quality in their own backyards. Through a partnership with the Dakota SWCD, the City provides education to its residents on raingarden planting techniques and maintenance. 
  • The City completed a 1,300 linear foot shoreline protection project on a DNR Protected Water. The project stabilized eroding banks, removed and controlled invasive species and re-established native plants within an average width of 25 feet over the length of the project. 

The City of Inver Grove Heights has consistently demonstrated its ongoing commitment to protecting the soil and water resources within its jurisdiction. The City's accomplishments are an outstanding example of how local government can put effective conservation on the ground. MASWCD and MPCA extend our thanks and congratulations to the City of Inver Grove Heights!

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