The Stream Hydrology Program exists to support the DNR Ecological and Water Resources director and staff by collecting data and providing information on stream flows in Minnesota that are needed to effectively carry out DNR statutory responsibilities and water management programs.
The director of DNR Ecological and Water Resources has been delegated authority from the DNR commissioner for administering the majority of the state water law contained in Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 103G. Chapter 103G gives the commissioner authority to regulate work in public waters; control the appropriation and use of water; ensure the safety of dams; and conduct water resource surveys, investigations, and studies.
Specifically, Section 103G.285, Subdivision 2 makes the commissioner responsible for limiting water withdrawals from streams during low flow conditions:
If data are available, permits to appropriate water from natural and altered natural watercourses must be limited so that consumptive appropriations are not made from the watercourses during periods of specified low flows. The purpose of the limit is to safeguard water availability for instream uses and for downstream higher priority users located reasonably near the site of appropriation.
Primary clientele are DNR Ecological and Water Resources technical staff, supervisors, and managers who need stream flow information to make permit decisions. Secondary clientele include technical staff in other DNR divisions, other agencies, local governments, consulting engineering firms, and members of the public needing stream flow information for planning and management decisions.
Requests for stream gaging assistance come from DNR field hydrologists, other state agency staff, and local governments and watershed organizations. More requests are received than can be served, so project priorities must be determined.
Products provided by the Stream Hydrology Program include:
Services provided by the Stream Hydrology Program include:
The Stream Hydrology Program uses a unique database and processing software known as HYDSTRA for storage and management of the data from the network of stream gages.
The HYDSTRA system stores DNR stream data, and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MNPCA) stream data. This is the first time the DNR and MNPCA are archiving stream data in the same location. Other DNR divisions and outside cooperators have expressed interest in sharing this data system as well.
HYDSTRA is a collection of database management tools and hydrologic software packages that allows users to store and organize historical data, graphically analyze and edit hydrologic data, store and access digital photos, maps and other documents associated with stream files. HYDSTRA also offers various output formats, both graphical and tabular, to share stream data with others.
Flood forecast/warning system gage data are automatically downloaded into HYDSTRA via a satellite link. Stream flow and stage data collected at DNR special project sites or reported to DNR by hydropower facility operators are also stored in HYDSTRA. DNR floodwarning gage data can be accessed at the DNR/MPCA Cooperative Stream Gaging Web page and a National Weather Service Web site.
|Greg Kruse||Water Monitoring and Surveys Unit Supervisor||651-539-2108|
|Joy Loughry||Field Operations Supervisor||651-539-2109|
|Lisa Pearson||Field Operations Supervisor||651-539-2113|
|Jeremy Rivord||Field Operations Supervisor||651-539-2115|
|Will Long||Hydrologic Technician||651-539-2129|
|Cory Peterson||Hydrologic Technician||651-539-2124|
|Ryan Whittaker||Hydrologic Technician||651-539-2106|
|Paul Thaemert||Hydrologic Technician||218-846-8482|
|Jon Libbey||Hydrologic Technician||218-999-7820|
|Jake Mickelson||Hydrologic Technician||507-537-6605|