The Kewaunee County Board this week passed a resolution asking the Department of Natural Resources to continue monitoring water quality on the Ahnapee River during the two-year draw down of the Forestville Millpond.
The DNR is checking total solids, nitrogen and phosphorus in the river as part of a total maximum daily load (TMDL) study of impaired waterways along the Lake Michigan shoreline including Kewaunee County.
“The TMDL study has a sensor that is above the Forestville Millpond, they have another one that is right below the dam or just down the river from it, and then there’s another one that’s down on Washington Road,” said Supervisor Chuck Wagner, who chairs the county Land & Water Conservation Committee. “They’re taking samples at those three places to determine what’s coming down the river.”
Data collection for the study is scheduled to end just before the draw down begins in November, Wagner noted.
“This request is for the DNR to continue those three testing points on the Ahnapee River so we still would know what’s coming into the Millpond and what’s further down the river. That gives us good, accurate, quantifiable information and data so that we have a good handle on exactly what’s happening there through the draw down process.”
As noted in the resolution, Door County officials are planning the draw down in an effort to address issues that include excessive sediment and infestation of invasive plants.
“It is vital to obtain hard evidence by testing the waters of the Ahnapee River during the Millpond drawdown process so that future decision makers have actual knowledge of the effects the Millpond drawdown has on the health of the Ahnapee River,” the resolution reads.