Dont let it spread! Save the Red

41607134_1567899007905732_r.jpegSAVE THE RED 

The Red River is 880 km Long with the last 175 km going through Manitoba and is the only river that flows North into Lake Winnipeg. The river’s basin was once the bottom of a glacial lake, Lake Agassiz, which covered the region 8,000 years ago. Currently, the Red River provides water for municipal, industrial and agricultural uses, and offers numerous summer and winter recreational opportunities, including boating, fishing (including ice fishing), camping and skating. 

41607134_1567899037228281_r.jpegWater quality is a concern in the Red River, and is affected by both natural (sediment) and human (contaminants) substances. The river supplies drinking water to municipalities in southern Manitoba, Minnesota and North Dakota, as well as water for industrial and agricultural activities. The Red River contains higher than normal concentrations of nitrogen and phosphorus that enter the river through agricultural and urban runoff. High phosphorus concentrations have led to enhanced plant growth and decreased dissolved oxygen in upstream lakes and wetlands, which has negative consequences for water quality and the ecosystem.

The Red River has a lot of suspended sediment.  This sediment makes the water more difficult to treat for human usage. Contaminants attach to the suspended particles, or hide behind them, making it difficult for water treatment plants to kill pathogens.

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Most recently the Zebra Mussel was declared an invasive species throughout the Red River, and as of 2014, Lake Winnipeg as well. Manitoba, in 2015, then claimed that saving  Lake Winnipeg from the Zebra Mussels was a lost cause (But not before first dumping multiple tonnes of Potash Fertilizer into the lake over 10 days). This invasive species population (and as well their size) exploded (ever see a 6 inch zebra mussel? I have!) Pelicans have been seen standing barely toe deep in the water.  Humans even get nipped in Lake Winnipeg while swimming (although I heard this year it wasn't as bad). I could go on but it gets overwhelming as seen in this 2018 news report https://globalnews.ca/news/4223683/growing-invasion-of-lake-winnipeg-evident-as-countless-shells-wash-ashore/ . 

Our goal is to raise money towards our awareness and fundraising project, mainly supplies, distribution  and product with any excess funds raised being used towards our projected long term removal project. Our fundraising project will have the proceeds fund the development of an Environmentally friendly and chemical free,  Zebra Mussel Invasive Species Removal Project (which we have planned but need the funding to act on and test effectively getting us pass the planning phase).

Time Is not our friend on this one though. Unfortunately due to the rapid rate of the Zebra Mussel reproduction and  having  no known natural predators along the Red River makes them more than challenging to deal with ...… Let me just say the math on that one is terrifying and I dare not repeat it.  

I HOPE that we will be able to reach our goal and be able to start the required steps for the above mentioned removal project before March of 2020. Not only will Lake Manitoba,but also the people and the province will benefit from this project. When proven effective we wish to expand and move along the entire water system. We hope that  with the help and cooperation of our neighbours to the south,  we will continue to  make our river system clean again improving the ecosystem, quality of life for all the residents along the Red River human or otherwise. We all need clean and drinkable water and our river deserves at least a  second of our time to understand and fix its problems so that it can continue to nourish us until its waters naturally stop flowing. 

Please Dont Let it Spread, Help Save the Red!

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Organizer 

Chantelle Norberg-Hempler 
Organizer
Selkirk, MB
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