In recent years many Minnesota communities have come to face something they never expected: declining groundwater supplies. For decades we believed our aquifers — the vast underground reservoirs that flow within the limestone and sandstone strata undergirding our state — were infinite. However, as we watch water levels fall in not only municipal wells but several beloved lakes and wetlands, we’ve come to know better. Unfortunately, our water infrastructure wasn’t built with this understanding in mind. Over the past few decades, as the Twin Cities has grown increasingly suburban, we’ve shifted away from relying on the Mississippi River and other surface waters towards groundwater. Today, 75 percent of water used in the metro area comes from wells.
Local experts have been tasked with figuring out why our aquifers have begun to shrink and what we can do about it. With the generous sponsorship of the City of St. Paul and event partner the Science Museum of Minnesota, FMR is proud to announce a free presentation featuring two leading authorities on this vital issue: Dr. James Almendinger, Senior Scientist at the St. Croix Watershed Research Station of the Science Museum of Minnesota, and Ali Elhassan, Manager of Water Supply Planning at the Metropolitan Council.
After a brief introduction, the evening’s presenters will summarize a wealth of information on groundwater issues related to our local Twin Cities watersheds. First, Dr. Almendinger will provide an overview of groundwater supplies, how precipitation affects groundwater levels and surface waters, and how changes in our environment have altered these natural resources over the years. Next, Ali Elhassan will lead us through specific cases of Metro-area communities facing groundwater supply challenges, a problem facing an increasing number of Minnesota cities. Elhassan and Almendinger will also present various land-use, stormwater management and conservation approaches to help us achieve a more sustainable water future.
This event is free, including entrance to the Science Museum and parking. Parking and other details will be emailed to registrants.
Ready to claim your seat? Visit http://fmr.org/participate/events/science_museum_FMR_2015 for registration requirements!