Updates and Articles

More development coming to Saint Paul's West Side

An exciting new riverfront development project planned for Saint Paul's West Side Flats will add commercial space with a strong pedestrian connection to the river esplanade, plus market rate and affordable housing.

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The green amidst the gray: the distinctive phenology of non-native shrubs

It’s finally (or already!) November and the leaves have fallen from the trees. Well, not quite all of them. If you take a close look at a nearby forest, you’ll likely notice a dense layer of green still present in the shrub layer. What are these shrubs and why are they still green when other species have all dropped their leaves? In and around the Twin Cities, it’s a good bet that these shrubs are either common buckthorn or one of a few species of bush honeysuckles, and their “distinctive phenology” actually plays a large part in their success in Minnesota’s forest ecosystems.

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A layer of green on an otherwise gray and brown backdrop is evidence of buckthorn’s distinctive phenology.
October: The season of the traveling embryo

A plant must move for its kind to survive.

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How will Minnesota implement the new buffer law?

One of FMR's top priorities during this year's legislative session was passage of Governor Dayton's much-discussed Buffer Initiative. While a substantially revised (and watered-down) version of Governor Dayton's proposal did become law, implementation of the law will be critical to its success.

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Clean water rules! We hope the courts agree.

The U.S. EPA’s Clean Water Rule, an update to the Clean Water Act of 1972, went into effect on August 28, 2015. Before the rule was finalized, North Dakota led 13 states in challenging the legality of the rule, exempting them from the rule until the courts make a decision. Now others are questioning whether enforcement of the rule in all states should halt while the courts decide its legality.

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Crown Hydro is trying (again) to renew 16-year old hydroelectric license

In spite of numerous yet unsuccessful attempts to build a hydroelectric power plant at St. Anthony Falls, Crown Hydro LLC is giving it another try.  Their most recent proposal is not garnering much support, however, and many folks­­—including the City of Minneapolis and the National Park Service are saying it’s time for Crown to go back to the drawing board.

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Of dishwashing & lacewings

Who knew creatures of night are fascinated by dishwashing?

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Governor Dayton establishes new MPCA advisory committee

Earlier this month, Governor Mark Dayton signed an executive order creating a Governor's Committee to Advise the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA). While the new group, which will consist of eight members plus the MPCA Commissioner, won't have the same authority as the recently abolished MPCA Citizens Board, the committee creates an important a forum for public input on environmental decision-making by the agency.

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Upcoming Events

Tuesday, July 30, 2024 - 5:30pm to 8:00pm
Rotary Pavilion at Levee Park, Hastings
Saturday, August 3, 2024 - 9:00am to 2:00pm
Mississippi River Gorge, Minneapolis
New date: Saturday, August 10, 2024 at 5 p.m.
Hidden Falls Regional Park, St. Paul