Skip to main content

Polluted wild rice beds added to state's impaired waters list

  • Author:
  • Updated:
    Original:

Pollution caused by sulfate has put wild rice beds in northern Minnesota on the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency's impaired waters list, MPR reports.

Sulfate is a chemical that grows naturally in soil and water, but researchers say much of the sulfate found in the affected areas is coming from iron mining, causing a major decline in wild rice beds.

Northland's NewsCenter says the MPCA is halfway through a two-year study that could change environmental standards concerning wild rice and sulfate. The current standard adopted in 1973 is 10 milligrams per liter.

MPR says the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce is suing to loosen the standard.

Wild rice is sacred to the Ojibwe of Minnesota. The Fond du Lace band of Chippewa fear more pollution could wipe out important stands of wild rice.

Next Up

Doug Wardlow

Doug Wardlow reneges on promise, will challenge GOP's AG candidate in primary

Wardlow's announcement sparked swift criticism from the MN GOP and the party-endorsed candidate, Jim Schultz.

Flickr - welcome to minnesota sign - Tony Webster

US News '150 Best Places to Live' features 1 from MN, 3 from WI

The latest US News list is for the most populous metro areas only, so no small towns.

tornado

7 tornadoes touched down last week in western MN, ND

Two of the seven were EF-2 level tornadoes, according to the National Weather Service.

covid

Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Tuesday, May 17

72 hours of case data reported over the weekend is included in Tuesday updates.

Stallings surveillance footage - screengrab - crop

City of Minneapolis, Jaleel Stallings reach $1.5M settlement

Although a settlement was made, the city will not admit fault or take any responsibility for the incident as part of the agreement with Stallings.

Kayak

2 rescued after kayaks capsize on Sauk River

Recent heavy rainfall produced a strong currents on the water.

covid 19 test

How to order 8 free at-home COVID-19 tests

A third round of free tests is now available from the U.S. government.

4303450641_ec7536c6ea_k

Three new Grandstand shows added for Minnesota State Fair 2022

The Beach Boys and Portugal. The Man are among several acts booked.

St. Louis County

St. Louis County set to declare state of emergency ahead of peak flood levels

Volunteers are urgently needed for sandbagging efforts in a small community near Voyageurs National Park.

Screen Shot 2022-05-16 at 5.03.30 PM

Brothers Bar & Grill closes in downtown Minneapolis

The Midwest chain closed its St. Cloud location in 2018.

Related

Minnesota's list of polluted waters grows by more than 500

On the bright side, there are 13 lakes that were cleaned up enough to come off the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency's semi-annual list of polluted waterways. On the other hand, more than 500 rivers and lakes were added to that list. There are now more than 3,600 bodies of water that are too polluted for fishing or swimming.

MPCA adds more Minnesota lakes and rivers to impaired list

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency is placing 500 additional lakes and sections of rivers on its list of impaired waters. Minnesota now has more than 3,600 bodies of water on the list. MPR reports about 40 percent of the state's waters are considered to have an excess of nitrogen, phosphorus, mercury, bacteria or other pollutants. Hundreds of clean-up plans have been developed over the past two decades, but less than 20 bodies of water have come of the list.