Green Visions

A Northland Morning feature focusing on local environmental issues, heard Wednesdays at 8:20 a.m.  Green Visions is brought to you by Duluth Grill and Heritage Window and Door.

apalca/Flickr

Tackle box? Check.  Ice auger? Check.  Life jacket?

Huh?

Your best chance of surviving an accident on the ice of a frozen lake or river this winter can be summed up on two words: life jacket.

©NRRI

Not much about coal is simple anymore.

Whether it's being criticized as a dirty fuel or defended as part of a mining lifestyle, coal even played a part in the last presidential election.

So because of - or perhaps in spite of - the controversy about coal, NRRI's latest biofuelis coming along at just the right time.

Nick Blackmer/Flickr

It might have been the first solar garden opening held in the snow, but we're tough up here.

St. Louis County

GIS technology (Geographic Information Systems) has been around for a while; in fact, St. Louis County has been using it for things like land records since 1985.

But a change to the ATV ordinance last spring seemed like a perfect time to tweak the County Land Explorer and add a "recreation" theme.

Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians/Flickr

Karen Holland/US Environmental Protection Agency

Tom Beery is an enthusiastic guy to begin with, but kicking off a two-day workshop on adaptation planning for coastal communities - on Duluth's Climate Adaptation Day, no less - you get the feeling that he just can't wait to get started.

"We don't have to argue the specifics of climate change," he says.  "We're experiencing change, and we can look at it from a readiness perspective."

Green space is a term you hear bandied about when someone is talking about reintroducing elements of nature into an environment.

Are you interested in getting involved in decision making? The MN DNR is looking for volunteers to join the citizen agency work groups to help decide how to manage issues. 

5 separate groups have been made to support fish species. Catfish, Walleye, Northern Pike, Musky, and Bass. 

You can focus on conserving lakes and ponds, but also address the issues of managing harvest recreation.

Applications are open!

Sharon Moen/Minnesota Sea Grant

How can you have a conversation about improving water quality in Minnesota if you don't take Lake Superior into account?

Minnesota Sea Grant decided you can't.  So when Governor Mark Dayton launched his series of "25 by 25" Water Quality Initiative town hall meetings and the northeastern Minnesota session was scheduled in Ely, they decided to assemble a panel of experts and launch an online town hall.

©Pat Thomas. Used with permission.

County Commissioner Frank Jewell isn't upset at all.

Despite the fact that he'd been pushing the St. Louis County Commission for six years to ban neonicotinoid pesticides and also to add bee- and butterfly friendly native plants, it wasn't until a group of citizens from the northern part of the county got behind the effort that things started to happen.

MN DNR

It's an unusual fall in Minnesota.

Tettegouche State Park interpretive naturalist Kurt Mead says things are still pretty green along the North Shore, but they're around 60% peak a little further inland, and in southern Minnesota (which usually lags behind the Northland) the colors are already popping. 

For more information on the fall colors around the state, check out the Fall Color Finder on the DNR's website.

We speak with Dr. Liz Hill, a UMD Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering, about the Sustainability Education Summit happening this Friday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

© Minnesota Power

Our guest today is Paul Helstrom, the Renewable Program Lead at MN Power, whose job is to create a more user friendly renewable energy program for MN Power and our community.  He joins us to share more about their community solar program.

River with islands in the middle and a town on the far side
Wisconsin Coastal Management Program

There's something called the Lake Superior Estuarium opening on Barker's Island. What's an estuarium, you ask? Deanna Erickson, Education Coordinator of the Lake Superior National Estuarine Research Reserve, joined Lisa Johnson to answer that question and tell us more. 

©Chad Richardson, International Wolf Center

It's not so much "who's afraid of the big, bad wolf" as it is who the big, bad wolf is afraid of.

Whether is was a bee sting or some other cub-hood trauma, Boltz, part of the International Wolf Center's ambassador pack, is afraid of flying insets.

Really afraid.

So while the staff at the Center may grin and roll their eyes a bit, they're taking it seriously.  Because among wolves, there are serious consequences for pack members who don't "act normal."

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