The North Dakota Department of Environmental Quality will launch a pilot project to test paying landowners for results, as opposed to simply paying for conservation projects with the assumption they benefit water quality.
Officials will push for a faster construction timeline for the $1.3 billion Red River Valley Water Supply Project, which will provide supplemental water during periods of extended drought to cities including Fargo and Grand Forks.
Ryan Richard built a new farmstead when the original plan for the Fargo-Moorhead Flood Diversion threatened his original farmstead. But the route of the revised diversion project now runs through his new farmstead, a setback he said will cost him millions of dollars.
Efforts to re-establish lake sturgeon in the Red River Basin began in 1997 and 1998, when the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources stocked juvenile sturgeon into the Red River and several tributaries, using fish from the Rainy River.
The dismissal of the lawsuit immediately opens the way for the Central North Dakota Water Project, but also will be helpful later in establishing the legal authority to use federal infrastructure to divert Missouri River water to the Red River.
Work continues on a project to bring water from the Missouri River to eastern North Dakota. This summer's drought doesn't have anything to do with the timing, but it shows the importance of it, one project leader says.