Resolution Supporting the Upper Pool 4 & Lake Pepin Habitat Restoration Project

WHEREAS, Lake Pepin is the only natural lake on the Upper Mississippi River and provides unique habitat for fish and wildlife, including many rare species; and

WHEREAS, Lake Pepin is a valuable cultural, aesthetic, recreational and economic asset to local communities and the states of Minnesota and Wisconsin; and

WHEREAS, Lake Pepin has been officially designated as a globally significant bird area due to globally high numbers of Common Mergansers which stop to feed on fish during their annual fall migration; and  

WHEREAS, Sediment is being deposited at an alarming rate and without action, the upper third of Lake Pepin will fill with sediment by the end of the century and the entire 26,000 acre lake will fill within 340 years; and

WHEREAS, Sediment causes serious water quality issues and Lake Pepin has been on Minnesota’s Impaired Waters List for turbidity for over a decade; and

WHEREAS, High turbidity muddies the water and prevents establishment of aquatic vegetation which provides critical food and shelter for fish and wildlife; and

WHEREAS, High turbidity and lack of vegetation threaten Lake Pepin’s fish and wildlife populations, recreation, and economic value; and

WHEREAS, Concern over habitat loss and degradation in Upper Pool 4 and Lake Pepin has been discussed by state and federal agencies and stakeholders for over two decades; and

WHEREAS, The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency’s Total Maximum Daily Load study calls for a decrease in internal sediment loading from wind and wave resuspension in Lake Pepin by fifty percent to help achieve submersed aquatic vegetation targets; and

WHEREAS, The construction of islands at other locations along the Upper Mississippi River has reduced wind wave action and sediment resuspension and greatly improved habitat and water quality, and  

WHEREAS, The filling of Lake Pepin limits access to small boats for fishing and recreation, and

WHEREAS, Dredging to increase water depths in selected backwater sites has improved deep-water fish habitat and small boat navigation in other areas, and

WHEREAS, An island construction and backwater dredging project on Upper Pool 4 and Lake Pepin would improve habitat, water quality, and small boat navigation; therefore

LET IT BE RESOLVED that ______________ strongly supports the Upper Pool 4 & Lake Pepin Habitat Restoration Project and will assist with project education and outreach, and funding if opportunities arise.


Signed ___________________                 Dated __________________