Members of the Rainy Lake Conservancy volunteer their time and energy to further a number of ongoing projects and events.
Water monitoring activities
are a key element in accomplishing the Rainy Lake Conservancy's mission. Good water quality is important to a great Rainy Lake environment. The Rainy Lake Conservancy participates in several programs that involve collecting samples and other data to establish baselines, trends, and to identify problems early.
Volunteers are frequently needed for these monitoring programs, so please contact for more information and current opportunities to volunteer.
Ontario Lake Partner Program
This program is sponsored by the Ministry of the Environment. Volunteers, including Rainy Lake Conservancy members, collect total phosphorus samples and make monthly water clarity observations. See for info and results. Rainy Lake Conservancy members also participate in the Great Ontario Dip-in.
Rainy Lake Monitoring Partnership
This program is a partnership comprised of the Rainy Lake Conservancy, Rainy River Community College and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency to develop a database defining the status of the Rainy Lake environment. See for access to the data. Click on Rainy Lake, and then select a location in the list box at the top of the page for data set in graph form.
Satellite Remote Sensing
In the summer of 2005, Conservancy members collected water samples in support of a Minnesota Pollution Control Agency satellite imagery calibration project to correlate remote and on-site measurements using data from a pair of NASA satellites, Terra and Aqua. What makes these satellites unique is that the images are free and the instruments were designed in part for oceanographic work - meaning they are designed to differentiate between different types of chlorophyll - the pigment contained in algae. The satellites cross the Rainy Lake and Lake of the Woods area daily.
Early calibration results are positive. One initial benefit of using the satellite images is tracking the frequently occurring algae blooms on Lake of the Woods. The Rainy Lake Conservancy is currently working with several partners to develop the process and tools to make the images available on a continual basis to help monitor some of the area's lakes.

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