July 19, 2019
‚ÄčProblems with home sprinkler systems often go unnoticed. Sprinklers are timed to run early in the morning when residents aren’t likely to see a broken or misaligned sprinkler head. Automated systems usually run every other day, regardless of a rainy forecast. The cumulative effect of inefficient and overzealous watering is taking a toll on our water supply.
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May 13, 2019
The foundations of the Bassett Creek Watershed Management Commission began in the late 1960s, when cities in the watershed came together to work on flooding problems.
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March 27, 2019
‚ÄčAdopt a Storm Drain, a new program aimed at protecting area lakes, rivers, and wetlands, has just launched in the Twin Cities. Residents in the seven-county metro area and Rochester are invited to “adopt” a storm drain by committing to keep it clear of leaves, trash, and other debris. The simple act of sweeping up around a storm drain protects local lakes and rivers by preventing pollution from entering our shared waterways.
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February 13, 2019
Making sure kids are safe at school has always been a top priority for Craig Nordstrom. A Bloomington resident since 1975, Craig joined the facilities staff at Bloomington Public Schools in the early ’90s. Throughout his career, he focused on finding cost-effective ways to ensure the safety of students and staff across the 17 buildings that comprise the Bloomington Public School system.
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January 10, 2019
Salty water is a growing problem in Minnesota that affects aquatic life and our drinking water. You might not realize that your use of a water softener or sidewalk salt contributes to a build-up of chlorides in our shared waterways. Fortunately, a new generation of Minnesota GreenCorps is hard at work raising awareness of chloride issues around the state.
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December 2, 2018
Printmaking and environmental education might seem like an unlikely combination. After all, printmakers have historically used many toxic chemicals in the name of art. Acid baths, mineral spirits, and screenprinting emulsion are just a few of the chemicals commonly found in print shops. But Highpoint Center for Printmaking in Minneapolis is taking a more environmentally responsible approach to the art form.
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October 23, 2018
Mercury accounts for one-third of the “impaired waters” listing for Minnesota—1,670 of the 4,603 lakes and rivers. As the word “impaired” implies, it is defined as body of water that is not meeting state water quality standards. Elevated exposure to mercury can harm the nervous system (brain, spinal cord and nerves) and the kidneys. It can cause illness or, in extreme cases, death, and it is a special concern for fetuses, infants and children, according to the Minnesota Health Department. Exposure to mercury during the time the nervous system is developing can affect a child’s ability to learn and process information.
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October 1, 2018
Early on an unseasonably hot September morning, Master Water Stewards from south Minneapolis were hard at work, weeding a massive rain garden that runs alongside Highway 55. While the steamy weather might’ve suggested otherwise, these seasoned Minnesotans realize that winter is on its way. Before the snow falls, there’s work to be done prepping rain gardens for winter.
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September 6, 2018
A 20-foot-wide buffer of pollinator-friendly plants greets visitors to Roots Return Heritage Farm and separates it from the highway’s rolling hills. This swath of milkweed, goldenrod, wild aster, and countless other prairie plants buzzes with bees, beetles, moths, and monarchs. It’s just one indicator of the environmentally-friendly approach behind this small-scale farm.
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June 19, 2018
On a sunny day in June, National Park Service rangers Rick Damstra and Sam House drop anchor close to Nevers Dam on the Saint Croix River. They scoop long tubes and jugs of river water to collect samples for the Great Lakes Inventory and Monitoring Service, one of many efforts along the historic riverway that keep the Saint Croix remarkably clean.
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