In June 2015, Governor Dayton signed into law a new buffer initiative aimed at enhancing protection of Minnesota’s waters. The buffer initiative will help protect the state’s water resources from erosion and runoff pollution by establishing roughly 110,000 acres of buffer along waterways.
What is required?
- The buffer width will be an average of 50 feet on public waters.
- The buffer width will be a minimum of 16.5 feet on public ditches.
When will this take effect?
- November 1, 2017 - Buffers on public waters will be in place.
- November 1, 2018 - Buffers on public drainage systems will be in place.
Will I be paid?
The obligation to establish and maintain the buffer is the landowners. Statewide there will be no payment or easement for taking this land out of production. However, there are some options relying on long-standing federal programs to provide financial and technical support to landowners. These are the federal FSA Continuous CRP Program, and the NRCS CSP and EQIP programs. On a public ditch system, landowners may be eligible to be reimbursed through a drainage system easement once a Redetermination of Benefits has been completed.
Buffer Map Viewing Application
DNR Buffer Mapping Project
- How was the map made?
- What are public waters?
- Can I challenge my public water designation?
- I don't think my watercourse is a public waters?
- Common landowner questions
2015 Buffer Law
- Buffer Law
- Establishment & Maintenance
- Alternative Practices