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About that Koshkonong dredging plan

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Greg Peck
January 11, 2013

Environmental concerns are muddying the waters of dredging planned on Lake Koshkonong, a project that seemingly had widespread support. Likewise, environmentalists are fighting to retain lower summer water level restrictions in a dispute that has been raging for decades and awaits a state Supreme Court decision.

After a story on the plan Dec. 30, The Gazette fielded calls from two readers alarmed that the winter drawdown coupled with last year’s drought is bringing the water to near historic lows. While that would ease dredging, it might kill aquatic species, these callers suggested. In a follow-up story Wednesday, DNR biologist Kurt Welke confirmed that the drawdown could have frozen turtles, frogs, salamanders and insects that winter in the shallow-water mud.

So are these concerns valid, or is the potential overriding value of the dredging—with the silt to be used to reinforce a nearby breakwater that divides Koshkonong from Mud Lake—more important? We’ll share our perspectives in our editorial Saturday.

Greg Peck can be reached at (608) 755-8278 or gpeck@gazettextra.com. Or follow him on Twitter or Facebook



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