The Minnesota House and Senate are quickly advancing bills to eliminate water quality standards that protect wild rice – Minnesota’s state grain. >>
We set up a new research project in Hampton Woods (top left) to control buckthorn (top right) and see how different methods (such as the forestry mower, bottom right) best protect and encourage native plants (like the yellow ladyslipper, bottom left).
What pops to mind when you think of restoring a forest? Perhaps people planting trees? ...How about bobcat-like machines busily eating up small trees and spitting out the splinters?
If you'd visited Hampton Woods this spring, this is exactly the scene you would have come across. The machines were forestry mowers, consuming invasive European buckthorn.
Not only were the mowers benefiting the long-term health of the forest, but they're part of a new FMR research project to compare and contrast the effectiveness of different methods to both control buckthorn and support the growth of native plants and habitat. >>
The two newest members of the FMR team, Raynette Prince (left) and Sophie Downey (right).
Spring is here and two new people have joined the FMR team to help us protect, restore and enhance the metro Mississippi River. Meet our new administrative assistant Ray Prince and seasonal outreach assistant Sophie Downey. >>
As reported by Josephine Marcotty in the Star Tribune, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources' request to stay a groundbreaking court order restricting heavy water use around White Bear Lake has been roundly rejected.
The judge, Ramsey County Judge Margaret Marrinan, harshly criticized the agency for what she called a “stunning” history of failing to comply with state laws designed to protect the environment.
Now, however, the Minnesota Legislature is considering a bill to essentially override the judge's ruling. >>
It wouldn’t be a legislative session without a bill from our friends at the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce to roll back basic environmental protections. Here's the worst of this year's edition. >>
Every so often, a bill starts moving at the Capitol that defies rational explanation. One such bill this year aims to give $2 million in state taxpayer funds to regulated parties to allow them to provide “oversight” of their own state regulators. Welcome to the MESERB bill. Fox…meet hen house. >>
In one of the more controversial moves of the legislative session, a key House committee is considering a bill granting immediate approval of the Enbridge Energy Line 3 project. >>
Super Volunteers Stacy and Allan. Photo by Anna Botz for FMR.
Believe it or not, March 20th marks the first day of spring! That means we're ramping up for event season and we've got plenty of opportunities for you to get your hands dirty with FMR. Join us to protect and restore local natural areas or rally for the river! >>
Whether helping paddlers come in to shore or aiding staff befuddled by new printers, office manager Michele Bevis was there with a steadfast and most welcome hand. Bon voyage, MB!
While FMR is known for our work at the Capitol and in the communities, forests and prairies along the river, we'd be lost without a strong home base. And that's exactly what Michele Bevis, our office manager, has provided for over 10 years.
So it is with deep gratitude that we say goodbye to Michele as she embarks on her next phase: one relaxing yet adventurous retirement. >>
If all goes well at the state Capitol this session, the City of Saint Paul could begin designing a new environmental learning center on the river at Watergate Marina as early as July. >>