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Understanding Sustainability at the State Level. John R. Wells Minnesota Environmental Quality Board Allocating Water: Economics and the Environment July 22, 2004. Sustainable development is …. Thinking & acting as if the long-term future mattered Recognizing how things connect

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Understanding sustainability at the state level l.jpg

Understanding Sustainability at the State Level

John R. Wells

Minnesota Environmental Quality Board

Allocating Water: Economics and the Environment

July 22, 2004


Sustainable development is l.jpg

Sustainable development is …

  • Thinking & acting as if the long-term future mattered

  • Recognizing how things connect

  • Living within our means

  • Taking creative approaches to issues


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The Governor’s Vision

  • Keep Minnesota’s waters clean

  • Ensure communities have safe water

  • Keep an accurate picture

  • Restore the casualties of society’s great progress

  • Develop effective leadership on water


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Reduce flood damage to cropland

Enhance recharge of groundwater

serving Moorhead’s

water supply needs

Reduce sediment loading to the

South Branch of Buffalo River

Protect waters

from

future threats

Focus and

alignment

on priorities

Restore waters

that are impaired

Use a

watershed

approach

Monitor

watersheds to

provide clear/timely

picture of status

Apply

individualized

solutions

Create institutional framework for

regional coordination of

drinking water supplies

Cooperation

is

essential

Ensure adequate

and sustainable

supplies of

clean water

Identify and promote water supply

choices for Metro area --- ensuring

sustainable drinking water

Keep

working lands

working

Effective

Executive Branch

water resource

leadership

July 1, 2004

Clean Water Cabinet Vision

Guiding Principles

Goals

Action Areas

Projects

Reduce flood damage to

cropland and structures

Grand Marais Flood Reduction

Enhance fish and wildlife habitat

Reduce sediment loading to

Red River of the North

Red River Valley

The Governor’s Clean Water Initiative

Manston Slough Flood Control

Central Minnesota

Lakes Area

Five county lakes area coordination

Coordinate lake management

Revise shoreland rule

Reduce phosphorus loadings from

Lambert Creek and phosphorus

concentrations in Vadnais Lake

Lambert Lake Wetland Restoration

Provide effective tools and incentives

to protect WQ and

sensitive natural resources

Reduce levels of harmful bacteria

Metro Mississippi

River

Twin Cities Sub-Regional Water Supply Plan

Demonstrate the value of regional water

supply planning and coordination;

providing an inter-connected system

Reduce sediment loading

to rivers and streams

Southeast

Minnesota

South Branch,

Root River

Coordinate/target deliver of farm

programs to cost effectively

remediate pollution sources

Reduce harmful bacteria and other

pathogens entering rivers and

streams to acceptable levels

Executive Policies

and Processes

Align budget related processes

and priorities

with Governor’s Clean Water Vision


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Water & sustainability

  • Growth & water

  • Jobs

  • Budget priorities


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Projected population growth

By 2010

Rates (%)

  • White … -8 to 0

  • Gray … 0 to 5

  • Black … 5 to 13

  • Blue … 13-37


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Aquifers Limited

in Minnesota’s Growth Corridor


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A framework for decisions

  • Convene corridor stakeholders

  • Identify trends, plans and goals and develop growth scenarios

  • Understand long-term regional implications of water and land use

  • Bring people together to change local and state policy


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Job Opportunity Building Zones

To stimulate economic development activity in rural Minnesota by providing local and state tax exemptions


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Rochester Water Supply Area

Decorah Edge

Rochester Water Supply Recharge Area

Karst


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Developments on the Decorah Edge

Assissi Heights

NorthernHeights

Country Club

Manor.

PillHill

Follwell Heights

RoseHarbor.

GoldenHill

Willow Heights


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Decorah Shale

Groundwater Flow Direction

Northern Hills Court


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Water Being Pumped To The Storm Sewer From The Basement Of A Home Located On The Decorah Edge


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Goals of a Decorah EdgeRecharge Area Ordinance

  • Preserve the intact recharge areas

  • Improve recharge quality and quantity


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10 Year Water GapsBy Resource($ Millions)


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Funding-related principles

  • No new General Fund expenditures without savings

  • Each agency must find savings, but the cabinet will act collectively

  • New fee revenues may be proposed when the fee would:

    • Ask polluters and resource users to pay for the benefits they receive

    • Not place an undue burden on those who would pay the fee

  • No new taxes


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Sustainable development is …

  • Thinking & acting as if the long-term future mattered

  • Recognizing how things connect

  • Living within our means

  • Taking creative approaches to issues


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National Sustainable Water Resources Roundtable

Understanding if we’re on the right track


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The General Systems Perspective

Biosphere

Economic

System

“Natural Systems”

Social System


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Community Water Supply Example of the Systems Perspective

Biosphere

Economic

System

Hydrologic

and Climatologic

Systems

Economic Systems

For Water

Supply

Social Systems

For Managing

Water Supply

Social System


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Indicators

Measurements

SWRR Process for Identifying Criteria and Indicators

Information Concepts

Systems Concepts

Identify Valued Forms of Capital

Criteria

Identify Components of Capital

And Processes Affecting Them

Identify Measurable Phenomena


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Possible Types of Indicators

Goal: Sustainability of Water Resources

Criterion

Criterion

Criterion

Criterion

Criterion

Stressors &

Investments

Underlying

Processes

Capital

Outputs

Indicators

Effects


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Targets for Indicators Ex 1

Goal: Sustainability of Water Resources

Criterion

Criterion

Criterion

Adequate Water Supply

Precipitation,

Evaporation &

Runoff

Pollutants &

Facility

Construction

Capacity for

Water Supply

Delivered

Water

Indicators

Human Health,

Income


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A Criteria & Indicators Model

Goal

Sustainability of Water Resources

Ecological

System

Social

System

Economic

System

Category

System Condition or Capacity

Criteria

Indicator

Category

Quality & Quantity

Human Health

Hazards

Processes

Outputs

Indicator

Human Effects

Ecosystem Effects


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Ecological System

Capacity to make water of appropriate quality and quantity available to support ecosystems

Integrity of ecosystems


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Social System

Social well being resulting from the use of water resources

Social well being resulting from the use of water-related ecological resources

Legal, institutional, community and technical capacities for the management of water and related land resources for sustainability


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Economic System

  • Capacity to make water of appropriate quality and quantity available for human uses

  • Economic well being resulting from use of water and related land resources

  • Economic well being resulting from the use of water-related ecological resources


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Draft Factors

For identifying, organizing, evaluating and choosing “Appropriate Indicators”

  • Defining the state of things

  • Relevance

  • Appropriate time horizon and scale

  • Indicator integrity

  • Understandability


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SWRR goals on sustainability of the nation’s waters

  • Develop criteria and indicators to track national water sustainability

  • Identify research collaboration opportunities

  • Collaborate in development of a 2005 report on water sustainability


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Lessons Learned

  • Think long term

  • Provide a process for developing a common language and understanding

  • Align economic and policy signals with sustainable behavior

  • Measure progress & make mid-course corrections


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Web Sites

  • www.eqb.state.mn.us/SDI/

  • www.eqb.state.mn.us/water/

  • www.nextstep.state.mn.us

  • http://water.usgs.gov/wicp/acwi/swrr/


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“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, that’s the only thing that ever has.”

Margaret Meade


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