Karst geology and water pollution
Post Date: September 22, 2020
Resource Type:
In southeast Minnesota there are unique geologic features that dictate the speed and direction of water moving from the surface through layers of soil and rock below.

In 2020, the State of Minnesota released educational resources that explain this complex geology using realistic graphics, animation, and aerial footage.

The videos and infographics show movement of water across three different geologic landscapes in the Root River Watershed.

The lessons provide an overview of karst geology starting with Minnesota’s basic geological history and processes and ending with student projects that explore best practices for protecting groundwater in karst regions. They are written for middle school ages and meet grade-6 standards for earth science from the Minnesota K-12 Academic Standards in Science (2019).

Use the videos, infographics, and lesson plans to understand and teach:

  1. How rain and melting snow is directly connected to aquifers, springs and streams in southeast Minnesota
  2. How proper well construction affects the quality of drinking water
  3. Why adjacent wells can have different nitrate testing results
  4. Why nitrates are increasing in certain streams
  5. How land use decisions can impact groundwater contamination directly underground and also miles away


Author: State of Minnesota
Length in pages or time: 15 minutes
Fee?: 0
Library Loan?: No
Is Training required?: No
Language other than English: Audio descriptions of videos available: https://www.mda.state.mn.us/segwresources
Order information or contact: To learn where you can borrow a poster, or to request an electronic copy, please contact Jen Schaust at MDA: Jen.Schaust@state.mn.us.
Link: https://www.pca.state.mn.us/karst-outreach
MAEE Partner Minnesota Pollution Control Agency