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Peter LaFontaine

Attack of the killer... algae?

A destructive storm can have a silver lining; Hurricane Barry seems to have lessened the Gulf of Mexico's dead zone. But this year's algae blooms are still hurting Minnesota's waterways.  >>

August 9, 2019

Listen: Kernza's continuous cover

What is Kernza and why do some experts think it's such a big part of Minnesota's farming future? In the Land Stewardship Project's Ear to the Ground podcast, learn more from the people working to advance this exciting new crop.  >>

August 8, 2019

Self-inflicted brain drain at USDA threatens farm economy

Leaders at the U.S. Department of Agriculture are plowing forward with the relocation of two major research agencies, a move that threatens to push out hundreds of career staffers and undermine scientific inquiry. The country can't afford this setback at a time when the farm economy is threatened from all sides and clear analysis of these threats is paramount.  >>

July 25, 2019

Downstream damage

The Mississippi River Delta as seen from the International Space Station this April shows the result of widespread flooding: sediment washed downstream and into the water along the coastline, which may lead to another near-record dead zone. (Image ISS059-E-36323 courtesy of the Earth Science and Remote Sensing Unit, NASA Johnson Space Center.)

Scientists predict the formation of an enormous dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico this summer, and some of the blame lies right here in Minnesota. Find out what links us to an ocean half a continent away, and how we can help.  >>

July 10, 2019

Safer drinking water is around the bend (for some)

As reported by the Star Tribune, new limits on farm fertilizer will benefit human health and wildlife. It's a huge step for the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, but is the state doing enough to protect our drinking water and the Mississippi River? >>

June 10, 2019