Oil pipe lines, oil satire and Mike Gelfand

Environmental attorney Kathryn Hoffman discusses the environmental concerns of the proposed Sandpiper Pipeline through northern Minnesota.

The first of nine public and evidentiary hearings this month on the proposed Minnesota reach of the Sandpiper Pipeline convened on January 5th at St. Paul’s River Center.



Report from the Climate Change Conference in Peru

Photo by Oxfam International, via Flickr. This photo is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic License.

I had the honor of being part of a nurses delegation to the U.N. Climate Change Conference in Peru. These are my impressions as one nurse in Lima.


The birds, bees & buffer coalition: Will pheasants find friendly habitat in the 2015 session?

Governor Dayton's Pheasant Summit generated some fascinating copy, including an interview with Minnesota Ag Commissioner Dave Frederickson in which he talked about just abolishing laws that require buffer strips regulations to be enforced because preserving water quality and habitat just creates too many hard feelings.


A rural take in defense of Rep. Jean Wagenius

A farmer friend emailed us yesterday:

Jean Wagenius has been a friend of family farmers in the last two years(and for that matter for a whole lot of years that she has served in the legislature) that she chaired the environment and agriculture finance committee on a number of issues, naming two of which are pollinators and “Forever Green”. She has been a strong defender of environmental review and gets that rural citizens should have rights to have a say about air and water quality in their community. Republican leadership acts like they are going to be bi-partisan but actions are louder than words.


Anoka-Ramsey Community College students work with wolves for on-going research study

Anoka-Ramsey Community College students assist in doing health assessments of wolves at the Wildlife Science Center in Columbus, Minn.

Inserting a syringe through the thick fur of a chemically immobilized wolf was surprisingly easy for Patrick Gelakoski, a student at Anoka-Ramsey Community College in Minnesota, even though he had


Minneapolis Central Riverfront becomes St. Anthony Falls Regional Park under a new park plan

(Photo courtesy of the St. Anthony Falls Regional Park Master Plan - Citizens Advisory Committee)

Imagine St. Anthony Falls as it looked when Europeans first saw the Mississippi River cascading over limestone rocks four centuries ago in the only natural waterfall on the river.


Gardens of all sorts can build community

The corner yard at 686 24th Ave. NE has 12 trees of several varieties; oak, linden, maple, cherry and choke crabapple.

Todd Larson and Macy Ashby purchased their home in 2008, and one of the first things they did was replace their furnace, putting in geothermal wells – imagine getting rid of the old octopus furnace, then paying only $10 a month in summer for air conditioning – worth it, they say.


Minnesota must continue to lead on clean energy

For the past two months I’ve been furiously working to collect comment cards from Twin Cities area youth in support of the EPA Clean Power Plan before the public comment period ends on December 1. To curb climate change, the plan calls for nationwide emissions reductions of 30 percent by 2030, and would require Minnesota to reduce its carbon emissions by more than a third in that time. Together with my fellow students from Youth Environmental Activists of Minnesota (YEA! MN), the high school program of the Will Steger Foundation, we collected 649 comment cards supporting the plan.


What's with the green donation bins around Dayton's Bluff?

(Photo credit: Forum staff) These green bins, soliciting donations of books and video games, look similar to bins set out by nonprofit organizations seeking donations for people in need.

You may have noticed a few new donation bins around the East Side. But you may not have looked closely at these green structures. Put out by the Greener Read Company, they ask people to put books, DVDs, video games and other items down the chute.

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