Groundwater use is vital to the people and economy in the Bonanza Valley. DNR wants individuals, communities and businesses to keep using groundwater. However, groundwater use in the Bonanza Valley might not be sustainable because groundwater use might be having a negative impact on aquifers, lakes, streams or wetlands.
The DNR designated this area as the Bonanza Valley Groundwater Management Area (GWMA) in 2016. The DNR has since increased monitoring, prepared for groundwater flow analyses, and developed a plan.
The Bonanza Valley Groundwater Management Area Plan lays out five broad objectives and describes specific actions the DNR will take. An important focus is to continue collecting and analyzing information to determine whether total permitted groundwater use is or is not having a negative impact on aquifers, lakes, streams or wetlands.
The plan was developed over two years by DNR staff and an advisory team of nearly two dozen representatives of local government, industry, agriculture and other agencies.
The DNR will continue to work with individuals, communities and businesses as we make this determination and as we implement this 5 year action plan.
- Bonanza Valley Groundwater Management Area Plan (117 pages)
- Aquifers, Ecosystems and Surface Waters
Groundwater use in the GWMA does not harm aquifers and ecosystems, and does not negatively impact surface waters.
- The DNR will improve monitoring of groundwater levels, basin water levels, stream flows, climate; groundwater associated biological communities and water use within the GWMA to inform the DNR permit decisions.
- The DNR will continue to build a comprehensive hydrological and climate monitoring system for the GWMA. The DNR will coordinate with federal, state, and local agencies in these efforts.
- The DNR will continue to improve information on water use within the GWMA.
- The DNR will develop and apply sustainability limits for aquifers, ecosystems and surface waters in the GWMA.
- The DNR groundwater appropriation permits will integrate sustainability limits, individual and cumulative permit analysis, and will include evaluation of existing permits within the GWMA.
- The DNR will communicate the status of Objective 1.
- The DNR will improve access to data collected and analyzed by other organizations in the GWMA.
- The DNR will promote groundwater recharge in the GWMA, consistent with sound water quality management.
Jump to the Aquifers, Ecosystems and Surface Waters section of the Bonanza Valley Groundwater Management Area Plan (117 pages)
- Water Conservation
Groundwater use in the GWMA is reasonable, efficient, and complies with water conservation requirements.
- The DNR will ensure that groundwater users are complying with water conservation requirements in their water supply plans and permits.
- The DNR will improve communication about and promote the values of water conservation in the GWMA.
Jump to the Water Conservation section of the Bonanza Valley Groundwater Management Area Plan (117 pages)
- Water Quality
Groundwater use in the GWMA does not degrade water quality.
- The DNR will include compliance with local, state, and federal water quality regulations as permit conditions.
- The DNR will ensure that permitted appropriations do not degrade water quality by moving known contaminants.
Jump to the Water Quality section of the Bonanza Valley Groundwater Management Area Plan (117 pages)
- Well Interferences and Water Use Conflicts
Groundwater use in the GWMA does not create unresolved well interferences or water use conflicts.
Jump to the Well Interferences and Water Use Conflicts section of the Bonanza Valley Groundwater Management Area Plan (117 pages)
- Groundwater Permits
All groundwater users in the GWMA have the necessary permits to use groundwater.
- The DNR will improve its capacity to detect unpermitted groundwater use.
- The DNR will ensure that permitted volumes reflect actual use and use does not exceed permitted volumes.
- The DNR will ensure that water users comply with conditions on appropriation permits.
Jump to the Groundwater Permits section of the Bonanza Valley Groundwater Management Area Plan (117 pages)
- Improved Access to DNR Monitoring Data
- DNR Implementation Activities
- Groundwater Recharge through Restorable Wetlands Map
- Water Monitoring Field Demonstration
- Bonanza Valley in the News
Spotlight on Sustainability
Water Conservation Story – David Perryman: The city of Glenwood’s leaders know the important role they play in protecting its most precious resource; water.
Water Conservation Story – Bob Brauchler: Bob Brauchler hesitates to call himself a conservationist, although he is one – even if it’s only by accident. Learn more of Bob's story in this video
Water Conservation Story - Anderson Family These water conservationists mean business. Jim Anderson and the Anderson family are investing in water conservation in the Bonanza Valley while investing in their business future.
What You Can Do
- Implementation Advisory Team meetings – You are invited to hear about the Bonanza Valley GWMA at least once per year. Sign up for email updates at the bottom of the Bonanza Valley GWMA web page to get meeting alerts.
- Citizen Science
- Volunteer rain gage reader (CoCoRaHS network), email [email protected] or contact your local Soil and Water Conservation District.
- Volunteer water clarity monitor.
- Volunteer Zebra Mussel program.
- Volunteer Lake Level monitor.
- Education and Outreach
- MN Project Wet Education Program – Supports water festivals and field days for youth or adults. Also is a great curriculum source for teachers!
- Minnesota Water Steward – Become a water leader in your neighborhood and show others how to conserve water.
- MN DNR Water Conservation Education – A great resource for teachers and learners.
- Sign up for project updates – See the bottom of this page to sign up for email updates.
- Check with your county soil and water conservation district (SWCD) for workshops and field trips.
- Conserve Water
- At home
- MN DNR Water Conservation in your home and in your yard.
- Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) Water Conservation in your home and in your yard.
- On the farm
- MN DNR Water Conservation on the farm.
- Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) Ag Weather and Irrigation Resources.
- US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service.
- University of Minnesota Extension Service – Irrigation Management.
- MDA’s Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program.
- Reduced Irrigation Study – Rosholt Experimental Farm.
- In your business
- MN DNR Water Conservation for industry and business – Water conservation is good for your business portfolio and bottom line.
- In your city
- At home
- Mark Hauck, Bonanza Valley GWMA Project Manager, 320-223-7846