All MDA services should now be working after Friday's worldwide vendor technology outage. We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.

Clean Water Land and Legacy Amendment LogoThe MDA is using a portion of the Minnesota's Clean Water Fund to broaden our understanding of water quality and water related issues and potential solutions. The tools and technologies developed provide an increase in scientific knowledge as well as improve our ability to share information.

Clean Water Fund activities:

  • Minnesota Water Research Digital Library
    The Minnesota Department of Agriculture maintains a centralized, web-based inventory of water related research in Minnesota. Users are able to access and search for thousands of research documents by topic, location and other attributes.
  • Vegetative Cover in Minnesota: Prospects and Challenges (2020)
    There is general agreement that increasing the adoption of vegetative cover (e.g. existing forages and cover crop systems) has the capacity to provide significant benefits to surface and groundwater quality; however, viable markets for these crops are not broadly available or they are not economically feasible. This feasibility study was initiated to learn whether there are economically viable opportunities to expand environmentally protective crops to improve water quality in areas with highly vulnerable groundwater. The study focused primarily on those crops and cropping systems traditionally grown in Minnesota, including perennial crops like alfalfa, small grains, and cover crops. This report is based on interviews and conversations with farmers, crop advisers and others key stakeholders.

    Key findings are summarized in the report's executive summary. Additional background details on the study, agricultural production by region, the interviews, and the ag practices used in the study areas are included in the report. Please contact Margaret Wagner at or 651-201-6488 for more information.

  • Runoff Risk Advisory Forecast
    In joint partnership, the MDA and the National Weather Service have developed a tool to help farmers and commercial applicators with the timing of manure application. The system uses the most current forecast information to predict the likelihood of runoff in coming days. Runoff can remove freshly applied nutrients from the targeted field.
  • Water Quality Models and Tools 
    In February 2016, the MDA hosted a symposium to discuss currently used or funded surface water quality models and tools. Speakers provided an overview and discussed uses, case studies and possible limitations. View presentation videos from this event.
  • Manure Applicator Education
    Clean Water funding was used to develop training manuals and resources for manure applicators and site managers. These educational materials will help ensure that manure is safely handled and properly applied.