Wednesday, June 25, 2014

A 30-second PSA - Slow Down - Slow Down Stormwater Runoff

Here is a link to the commercial that we had run late March through early May.  The snow stuck around so we weren't quite seeing grass at that point but the message was out there as a reminder that we all can help reduce the flow of stormwater and reduce what goes down storm drains.  Only rain down storm drains.

Thanks to the Community Opportunity Foundation of the Duluth-Superior Area Foundation for support of this public outreach.

It ran on KQDS Fox TV.

Watch the commercial.

Education Opportunity - Project WET and MinnAqua July 30, 31

MinnAqua Fishing: Get in the Habitat!

& Project WET Educator Workshop

 July 30-31, 2014

Two day learning experience for teachers to learn about educating about water and aquatic life topics.

Contact the Great Lakes Aquarium
Samantha Smingler 218-740-2027.
Registration deadline July 23.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Flooding in MN

Thoughts go out to the communities experience flooding at this time.  From the north border with Canada to the southern part of Minnesota and the Twin Cities.

Through the hard times it's good to see people come together to help out.  Filling sandbags, helping clean areas as water subsides, and helping to rebuild areas.

Some of our blue barrels went north to help with docks on Rainy Lake.

Here are some current streamflow values for gage height and discharge.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Plastic barrels no longer available

Barrels are no longer available from ESD - But you can sign up for a Rain Barrel making workshop!

Blue plastic 55 gallon barrels are no longer available from the City of Superior Environmental Services, BUT... if you are interested in signing up for our Spring 2016 rain barrel workshop you can join us in making a rain barrel out of these blue barrels for a nominal price.

The barrels are not food safe, and the City makes no claims as to the safety or reliability of the barrel or resulting liquids from the barrel.

Contact: 715/394-0392 or email to get your name on the contact list for the spring 2017 workshop.

Here is a video on how to make a rain barrel from a plastic rain barrel:
Make a Rain Barrel

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Rain Garden Designs

Rain gardens are excellent infrastructures to help capture excess stormwater and improve water quality. They are also aesthetically pleasing. Interested in installing one, but do not know where to begin?  The City of Maplewood, MN has a great website about starting rain gardens and even have some designs for those who are artistically challenged. Click here for more info.

The following are a few designs. Plants are hardy to Zone 4 (perfect for Superior). Designs are meant for small (8’x16’ to 12’x24) gardens, perfect for the city lot.
Butterflies and Friends

Prairie Garden

Monday, June 9, 2014

A different take on cleaning up water

We just finished giving all of Superior's 5th graders a tour of our wastewater treatment plant. They seemed to enjoy it and we enjoyed having them here. It is important that the next generation understands the water flushed down the toilet or water draining down a sink goes somewhere. Luckily, it comes here, but what if you were to treat all of your own wastewater? Could you do it? The Cedar Grove Cheese factory in Plain, WI does!

Cedar Grove Cheese uses a process called "Living Machine" to naturally clean up all the washwater produced in the cheese-making process. It is a 3-4 day process that uses microbes and hydroponic plants. That is pretty cool, the water that leaves is then cleaner than the water that came in to the factory. It would be pretty interesting if we were to use something similar, but we do process about 1,000 times more water a day than at Cedar Grove. 

On related note . . . did you take a look at Google's homepage image today? The image was created by their "Doodle 4 Google 2014" winner that shows a "transformative water purifier." It is an invention that turns dirty and polluted water into clean water.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Storm Sewers are looking good!

The community has an opportunity to see wonderful talent from local artists and to become more aware about storm drains. Six artists were selected to each paint beside one storm drain. Go check out the art and learn more about stormwater pollution prevention.  Anything that enters a storm drain, in most cases in Superior, will head out directly toward a stream heading to Lake Superior.

Painting by Jeredt Runions.
Location: Belknap just below Banks Ave.
Painting by Falyn McCotter.
Location: South Tower Ave. by Webster Park.
Painting by Chelsey Miller.
Location: On 28th St and Lamborn.  Near Northern Lights School Entrance.

Painting by Holly Bounting and Joshua Vig
Location: Near WITC on 21st Ave. E. by Catlin.

 Painting by Colin James Wiita.
Location: 5th St and 22nd. 

Painting by Thomas Rep.
Location: Belgian Club, 3931 E. 2nd St.
The map above shows where the painted drain sites are located.  Visit all of the locations for a real treat of local public art.

An art exhibit will be up at the Superior Council for the Arts North End Arts Gallery in the Red Mug building beginning June 13.  A reception for the artists will be on
Saturday, June 14
from 2-4 p.m. at the gallery
Brochures on the art and locations will be available soon and distributed at the visitor bureau, government building, library and other locations.
The project was funded by the Community Opportunity Fund of the Duluth-Superior Area Community Foundation.   Paint for the artwork was donated by Sherwin-Williams.
For more information, call the City of Superior Environmental Services at 715/394-0392 or email

Here is the link to the Superior Telegram article on their front page today.