There are 10 beach advisories* for the week of 8/7

10 Beaches with an E. coli-related Advisory:

Backbone Beach (Dundee, Delaware County, IA)*
Denison Beach (Black Hawk Lake, Lake View, Sac County, IA)*
Emerson Bay Beach (West Okoboji Lake, Milford, Dickinson County, IA)*
George Wyth Beach (Waterloo, Black Hawk County, IA)*
Lake Keomah Beach (Oskaloosa, Mahaska County, IA)*
Nine Eagles Beach (Davis City, Decatur County, IA)*
North Overlook Beach (Lake Red Rock, Pella, Marion County, IA)**
Prairie Rose Beach (Harlan, Prairie Rose Beach (Harlan, Shelby County, IA)*
Union Grove Beach (Gladbrook, Tama County, IA)*
Whitebreast Beach (Lake Red Rock, Pella, Marion County, IA)**

*Data from the Iowa DNR State Park Beach Monitoring Program
**Data from U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Rock Island District

Despite a strategy for reduction, the NRS Annual Progress Report
shows nitrogen exports are up

 The Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship (IDALS), and Iowa State University (ISU) published the 2018-2019 Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy Annual Progress Report at the end of June. The report, published significantly later than previous years' reports, provides data on nitrogen and phosphorus nutrient levels in Iowa's waterways and implementation of nutrient reduction efforts. It aims to publicize the effectiveness of nutrient mitigation resulting from voluntary non-point source agricultural conservation tactics, in addition to point source requirements. 

IEC had the opportunity to comment on the NRS report draft in March of 2020. While two of IEC's suggestions were included in the final report, many were excluded

After years of requests, the NRS report finally included nitrogen load export data on page 35. This information is crucial to understanding the effectiveness of the State's efforts to reduce nutrient export. In our March comments, IEC urged the NRS reporters to compare the nitrogen export data to the 1980-96 baseline. This comparison is necessary to assess progress toward the 45% nutrient reduction goal. NRS authors responded that the process to conduct an accurate comparison using emerging data sources is still being developed. However, the nitrogen export data was considered valid enough to be included in the report. We are asking that it simply be compared to the baseline data. 

This comparison shows that not only is Iowa failing to achieve a 45% reduction in nitrogen load with a 41% reduction coming from non-point sources, but it is moving alarmingly in the opposite direction with a 34.3% increase in nitrogen export. 

The importance of the NRS report is ensuring the state's strategy adequately addresses nutrient pollution and provides solutions to minimize Iowa's contribution to the Gulf crisis. With abundant time and significant taxpayer money invested in cost-share programs, Iowans have the right to hold reasonable expectations for the effectiveness of the state's approach to nutrient reduction. So far, the state is not upholding its end of the bargain. IEC stands by its additional comments that were not addressed in the final report. 


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Follow us at @iowawaterwatch

Lake Petocka, Polk Co., IA Photo credit: @and204

Iowa River, Hardin Co., IA Photo credit: @greenacres_photography


What's New in Iowa's Water News

Responsible recreation: Sportsmen and women set an example in the age of social distancing (Des Moines Register)
Growing area of Extreme Drought in Iowa (WHO Radio News)
Big-Money Investors Gear Up For a Trillion-Dollar Bet On Farmland (NPR)
Trump Administration Invests $462 Million to Modernize Water and Wastewater Infrastructure in Rural Communities (USDA)
Swimming Not Recommended at Lake Red Rock Beaches (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers - Rock Island District)
Some Thoughts on Tile Drainage, Agricultural Runoff, and Flooding (Regional Strategic, LTD.)

Upcoming Water Events

Half Price Canoes - Rock Creek Marina, Camanche - Aug. 8
Mussel Beach Cruise - Rock Creek Marina, Camanche - Aug. 8
Iowa Games Big Fish Classic - Honey Creek State Park, Moravia - Aug. 9
Scharnberg Park Fishing - Scharnberg Park, Everly - Aug. 11
Tubing on the Creek - Prairie Creek Recreation Area, Maquoketa - Aug. 12
Family Kayaking at Sand Lake - Sand Lake, Marshalltown - Aug. 12
Kayak Safety Basics - Pinicon Ridge Park, Central City - Aug. 13
Paddle in the Park: Canoe - Big Woods Lake, Cedar Falls - Aug. 14
Paddle in the Park: Kayak - Big Woods Lake, Cedar Falls - Aug. 14
Fishing Has No Boundaries - Rock Creek Marina, Camanche - Aug. 15
Catch-it Clean-it Cook-it - Free - Jester Park, Granger - Aug. 15


Iowa Environmental Council
505 Fifth Ave., Suite 850 
 Des Moines, Iowa 50309-2317

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