Water Resources

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Taft Lake
Richfield is home to 15 ponds and 3 lakes which connect to Lake Nokomis, Minnehaha Creek and other natural water bodies.  Water resources improve the quality of our lives year round and provide us with great benefits such as; recreational opportunities, fish and wildlife habitats, runoff filtering and flood prevention.

WHAT IS STORM WATER?
Storm water is the water that flows across the ground and pavement when it rains or when snow and ice melt. The water seeps into the ground or drains into city storm sewers. These are the drains you see at street corners or at low points on the sides of your streets. Collectively, the draining water is called storm water runoff.

WHERE DOES THE STORM WATER GO?
Storm water that does not seep into the ground drains into systems of underground pipes and is released into wetlands, ponds, and lakes.

WHY CAN STORM WATER RUNOFF BE A PROBLEM?
Water that runs off our property during a rainstorm is the number one cause of water pollution according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

Storm water can pick up debris, chemicals, dirt, and other pollutants and flow into a storm sewer system or directly to wetlands, ponds, and lakes. Anything that enters a storm sewer system is discharged untreated into the waterbodies we use for swimming, fishing, and providing drinking water.

WATER RUNOFF PREVENTION
The key to keeping our ponds, lakes and rivers clean is to encourage the water to soak into the ground on our property. And there is help available so that you can do your part. Typical Best Management Practices include:

  • Raingardens
  • Stabilizing shorelines with native plants
  • Restoring wetlands
  • Controlling erosion or soaking in storm water runoff with pervious or porous pavers.
To learn more about these practices, visit the Rice Creek Watershed District's Blue Thumb-Planting for Clean Water website.

STORM WATER MANAGEMENT/WATERSHED DISTRICT INFORMATION
A watershed is the area of land that collects and transports rainfall and snow melt to a given lake, stream, or wetland. Watersheds can be a few square miles in size, as in the case of a small lake, or continental in size, as in the case of the Mississippi River.

A watershed district is a special purpose unit of local government. Its area is based on watershed boundaries and its purpose is to manage water resources. By managing water resources on a watershed basis, communities can better work together to prevent and correct such problems as flooding, polluted lakes, and eroding stream banks. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION STORM WATER EDUCATION
Do your part to Help Keep Wood Lake and other Wetlands Clean
Getting ready for winter often means washing out garages and cars. This soapy water drains to surface water like Wood Lake without getting treated. This soapy water is harmful to fish and other aquatic wildlife. Minimize the soap use and be sure to use eco-friendly brands. Other ways to help reduce pollution is to be sure you clean up after your dog, make sure you do not use harmful lawn products and avoid drips and spills if you do your own oil changes on your cars and boats.