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Endangered? The St. Croix River

A Case Study in Water Stewardship


Pamela Davis


Managing the St. Croix River has sparked tremendous controversy due to conflicting uses of the river. At risk is the water quality and aesthetic value of this National Scenic Riverway. The drama unfolding around the St. Croix River is used in this case study to illustrate water resource concepts and the difficulties that can arise when making decisions about natural resources.  Designed for a water resources course taken primarily by undergraduate juniors and seniors, the case could be used effectively in classes covering water quality, water policy, environmental policy, limnology, stream ecology, environmental studies or science, or environmental decision making.

  • To understand the importance of values in decision-making.
  • To understand key components of a decision-making model.
  • To experience dilemmas in water quality decision-making.
  • To apply aquatic ecological concepts in decision-making.
  • To understand and apply issues of scale (temporal and spatial) in water resource decision-making.
Keywords: St. Croix River; National Scenic Riverway; water resources; water quality; environmental decision-making; invasive species; exotic species; zebra mussel; Dreissena polymorpha; biomonitoring; Minnesota; Wisconsin
Topical Area: Policy issues, Regulatory issues
Educational Level: Undergraduate upper division
Formats: PDF
Type/Method: Analysis (Issues)
Language: English
Subject Headings: Natural Resource Management   Environmental Science  
Date Posted: 03/27/00
Date Modified: N/A
Copyright: Copyright held by the National Center for Case Study Teaching in Science, University at Buffalo, State University of New York. Please see our usage guidelines, which outline our policy concerning permissible reproduction of this work.

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