Minnesota State Drought Programs

Program Title: System-Wide Low-Flow Management Plan, Mississippi River above St. Paul, MN

Function: Response, Planning

Program Assistance or Functional Assistance: During extreme low-flow events on the Mississippi River above St. Paul, MN, hydropower operations and adjustments to reservoir control structure gates have the potential to cause large percentage changes in river flow. Large flow fluctuations, especially during periods of low flow, can have significant negative impacts on instream fish and wildlife and can create water supply problems for downstream users. Droughts and associated low flows are inevitable, but artificial flow fluctuations can exacerbate the negative impacts.

Statute or Authority: No data

Agencies (primary agency listed first): Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, MN Dept. of Natural Resources, U.S. Geological Survey

Customers Served: General public

Triggering Event or Circumstance-How does this program relate to drought? When the average daily river flow is at or below the trigger flow. Trigger flows for this plan are measured at the closest active United States Geological Survey (USGS) gauging station and roughly approximate the annual 90% exceedance flow at each gauge.

Unmet Needs at federal, state, local and tribal levels. Includes changes from customer or "provider" perspective: No data

Program Limitations: No data

Contact Name and Phone Number: David R. Ford, Surface Water Engineer
(651) 296-0437