- Associated Press - Thursday, March 5, 2015

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - A study by the agency tasked with protecting Minnesota’s environment says no lakes and only a few streams in the southwest corner of the state meet quality standards for fishing and swimming.

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency study (https://bit.ly/1B7W2sx ) blames high levels of bacteria, nitrates and sediment in the water for the bleak assessment. The agency took a look at lakes and streams across the four watersheds in southwest Minnesota that are part of the Missouri River basin. Of 93 streams it examined, only three were found to fully support aquatic life and recreation.

The report shows none of the lakes in the basin met aquatic recreation standards.

The agency says improving water quality will require changes on the land draining to the basin, especially reducing pollutants from farming.

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