Corps of Engineers and Turtle Mountain Band partner on Shell Valley Aquifer project study

Devils Lake Newsroom Special Report

TURTLE MOUNTAIN . - The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, signed a cost sharing agreement this week with the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians of North Dakota, to study the hydrogeology and groundwater flow of the Shell Valley Aquifer in Rolette County, North Dakota.

The Tribal population within the Turtle Mountain Indian Reservation relies on groundwater, primarily the Shell Valley Aquifer, as their source of water. This project will study the feasibility of conducting a hydrogeologic study and groundwater flow model of the Shell Valley Aquifer to help the tribe manage its groundwater resources and understand potential contaminate flow paths. This project will directly impact critical Tribal land resources.

Work on the study is anticipated to begin this month and be completed in 2023. The project is estimated to cost $890,000, of which around $800,000 will be federally funded.

The Corps of Engineers is authorized to conduct feasibility studies under the Tribal Partnership Program. This program was developed to perform water-related planning activities and activities related to the study, design, and construction of water resources projects located primarily on tribal lands that substantially benefit federally recognized tribes.

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