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The bagworm caterpillar is safe when left in its tiny house.

The vulnerable bagworm caterpillar is safe from most predators inside the case it built around itself. Only its head and forelegs extend as it moves about, then readily retreat if danger threatens. 

The little known, but very abundant, bagworm moth has recently emerged from the protection of the home it built and carried on its back throughout its larval-hood!

July 2016
A report by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency that lists the neighborhood surrounding the facility as the city's highest levels of lead poising and asthma hospitalizations, and points to the recycling facility as a leading cause in the issue.

According to the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, the neighborhood surrounding Northern Metals, which is located along the North Minneapolis riverfront, has the highest levels of lead poisoning and asthma hospitalizations in the city. 

FMR has been working with community members in North and Northeast Minneapolis to make their riverfront (the Above the Falls stretch) more accessible and appealing, but you can't enjoy new parks and trails when you're breathing in lead and other pollutants!  

One of the suspected sources of lead and other air contaminants in the area is Northern Metals, a recycling company that operates a large metal shredder on the North riverfront.

June 2016

Following a hectic end to the 2016 legislative session, the Minnesota Legislature adjourned with some important work left undone. Legislative efforts to pass a transportation bill and a bonding bill failed, while a surprise $100 million wording error in a tax bill earned that piece of legislation a pocket-veto from Governor Dayton.

While the Governor has expressed support for a special session, the likelihood of such a session remains uncertain. FMR and our allies strongly encourage Governor Dayton and state legislators to reconvene to complete their work, which includes much-needed funding to protect Minnesota's water resources.

June 2016

Among the world’s smallest sanitation engineers, the dung beetle takes on the task of managing the world’s copious quantities animal waste with enthusiasm and rivalry!

June 2016
Gathering invertebrates, indicators of water quality

Students from Elk River High School sample invertebrates from a stretch of the Mississippi River. These aquatic insects are excellent indicators of water quality. 

With restoration work at the William H. Houlton Conservation Area slated to start this fall, students from the local Elk River Senior High School have begun to collect baseline data to help FMR track the restoration's impact on local amphibians, plants, trees and aquatic invertebrates.

June 2016
The desolate West Broadway bridge over I-94

For many Northsiders, this is the path to the Mississippi River: the West Broadway bridge over Interstate-94. Improvements like a barrier separating the sidewalk from cars, a safe biking space, updating the chainlink fence and adding greenery or art would make this a far more welcoming route for pedestrians and bicyclists traveling to the river.

Currently, the majority of North's residents must make their way over Interstate-94 and through a wall of industry to see and enjoy their riverfront. FMR is working to understand these barriers and identify opportunities to reconnect Northside residents to their Mississippi River. As more of this riverfront transforms from industrial use to parks and trails — changes that FMR has long advocated — we must work hard to ensure that current and future riverfront parks are accessible to area residents. 

June 2016

There was only one correct response for this month's view of a quiet spot along the North Minneapolis riverfront.

June 2016

After Gov. Mark Dayton's pocket veto of the tax bill, a special session appears more likely this month. The governor chose not to sign the bill as it contained a $100 million wording error (an "or" instead of an "and"), letting the clock run out and preventing it from becoming law. A June special session will be needed to correct and re-pass the essential bill, making it likely the Minnesota Legislature will also tackle important transportation and bonding business left undone, including vital funding for state water quality improvements.

June 2016

Produced for FMR by award-winning local filmmakers John Kaul and Tom Reiter, and narrated by Minnesota Public Radio's Steve Seel, this 30-minute documentary tells the story of how one man’s vision — combined with smart citizen advocacy and effective political leadership — created the Mississippi River's first and only national park right here in the Twin Cities. Enjoy the film online, request a copy for your local library, school or organization. 

May 2016
Perennial crops can help reduce agricultural runoff, provide pollinator habitat and increase farm profits.

Perennial crops can help reduce agricultural runoff, provide pollinator habitat and increase farm profits. Photo courtesy of Forever Green.

Minnesota just made real progress towards clean water. 

Funding for Friends of the Mississippi River's two top priorities, the Working Lands Watershed Restoration Program ($594,000) and Forever Green ($1 million) was secured at the Minnesota Capitol on Sunday, May 22, 2016.

Both programs have received widespread support from clean water organizations, local government units, and farm and commodity groups. We'd like to thank all the River Protectors who expressed their support for these programs when it was most needed, not to mention Gov. Mark Dayton and the legislators who came through for the health of the Mississippi River and all of Minnesota's waters.

May 2016

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