Environment & Outdoors

Tony Webster/Flickr

The EPA's plans to roll back car emissions standards has brought to light another issue: just because the federal government relaxes regulations doesn't mean states - and even individual companies - have to go along with it.

This month's Minnesota Climate Forum hopes to inspire businesses large and small from all different sectors to get started on making their own changes.

Maija Jenson

Listen to this weeks Sea Grant Files about how citizen scientists can learn the protocols, data gathering techniques and can contribute to community education and research collaborations.  2018 Citizen Science Day is happening Friday April 14. A great way to get started is to be a part of the Twin Ports City Nature Challenge, a photo gathering competition happening April 27-30.

Mumes World/Flickr

How does that meme on Facebook go?

"April showers bring snow plowers"?

Leave it to Larry Weber to remind us just how important these April snows are.

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The snow is on the crocuses and dandelions.

The single-digit overnight lows tonight could crisp some early leaves.

But leave it to 20-year KUMD veteran host Tom Kasper to find some things for gardeners to look forward to.

MPCA

Have you heard about the Duluth Urban Area Streams and Watershed reports? There are two public meetings happening this week and it is a great opportunity to speak up about water in Duluth.

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency is seeking public comment on two Duluth Urban Area Streams Watershed draft water quality reports. Opportunities for public comment close on April 18.

More information

Torn between longing for signs of spring and the excitement of a winter snowstorm, Northlanders can find a little something to make everyone happy.

Milkweed Editions

Dave and Amy Freeman are "adventure advocates."

Four years ago, they paddled and sailed 2000 miles from Ely to Washington D.C. to to call attention to a proposed sulfide-ore copper mining operation near the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness.

In September of 2015, they began a year in the BWCAW, sharing their experience through video, photos, and blog posts.

Water Resource Management and Policy Extension Educator for Minnesota Sea Grant, John Bilotta shares work and ideas to help manage storm water run off.  He shares how green infrastructure is not just adding green space, but is also about reducing non permeable surfaces like roofs, roads and alleyways. 

What can you do? Build a rain garden and listen to The Sea Grant Files on KUMD.

MN Sea Grant

Larry Weber returns from his peregrinations with a look into the future at The Spring To Come ... and marvels at February: it's only the second time in 40 years that it's been the snowiest month!

If there's one thing people in the Northland care about, it's our water.  We love our rivers, streams and, of course, the big lake.

So when the conversation turns to things like polluted trout streams, setting acceptable levels of pollutants and how best to manage the three watersheds that make up the Duluth Urban Watershed, it's not surprising that the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency wants to hear from folks up here on their proposals.

World Naked Gardening Day

Master gardener Tom Kasper celebrates the first day of spring with some pruning tasks for outdoors, some seed-starting tasks for indoors, and social media's fascination with World Naked Gardening Day.

©Sparky Stensaas. Used with permission.

Two years ago at this time, the Northland was bracing for a foot of snow.  29 years ago, it was -12 in Duluth.

We're looking at temps in the 40s and 50s this weekend; perfect time to scout out some Gray Jays building nests or watching Red Crossbills enjoying this year's bumper crop of pine cones.

From adding fresh produce grown at UMD to today's rollout of compostable cups and straws, the U's Dining Services and Office of Sustainability are making big strides with a little tiny footprint.

The United Nation's World Water Day is coming up on March 22, 2018, a day to raise awareness of the finite nature of fresh water on earth.  MN Sea Grant suggests some ways you might celebrate this important day, this year with the theme, "Nature of Water." Listen for about how water and water shortages are affecting people worldwide and for ways you can raise your voice and a glass (of water) to celebrate World Water Day in your corner of the world.

  Minnesota Sea Grant

Lisa Johnson

Jessica Looman is feeling pretty good about the state of solar energy in Minnesota.

What's got the state commerce commissioner "walking on sunshine"?

Minnesota's solar capacity between 2015 and 2016 grew almost three times - to put that in perspective, the 476 megawatts added in 2017 is enough electricity to power 53,000 more homes.

Add to that declining prices, increased consumer demand and 57,000 clean energy jobs in the state, Minnesotans may be inclined to quote Timbuk 3 from back in the day: "The future's so bright, I gotta wear shades".

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