BWCA

New fires lead to closings in the BWCA

The Forest Service has closed some areas of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area, where three new wildfires are burning. The largest is 75 acres. But crews are aggressively fighting another two-acre fire because it's near an area of dry timber that was part of the 1999 blowdown.

Forest service says all BWCA fires contained, controlled or out

The wildfires that have been plaguing the Boundary Waters Canoe Area wilderness area in northeastern Minnesota are contained, controlled or out, the U.S. Forest Service reported Saturday. However, with the forecast of dry weather in the next few days, campfire restrictions remain in the area and some lake and trail closures are still in effect.

BWCA officials monitoring nearly a dozen fires

The fires burning in the Boundary Water Canoe Area are mostly small, lightning-sparked blazes. A little rain Thursday didn't do much to help put them out. A small area of the BWCA wilderness and a hiking trail were closed. The biggest fire is the 50-acre Cummings Lake fire, which has not grown much in the last few days.

Cell phone tower alongside BWCA is a go after Supreme Court rejects case

The Minnesota Supreme Court refused to hear a case involving construction of a 450-foot cell phone tower just outside the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. Critics of the plan argued the blinking tower would mar the scenery of the federal wilderness area. But an appeals court sided with AT&T, which will now move ahead with the tower.

Federal regulators say Minn. taconite plants must cut emissions

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is imposing new air pollution regulations for the taconite industry in northern Minnesota that go beyond state regulations. The Duluth News Tribune reports the new federal rules require plants to install technology to reduce smokestack emissions that cause haze and lung ailments.

Minnesota fire crews head to dry western states

Minnesota is sending many of its firefighters and equipment to southwestern states plagued by prolonged dry conditions. The Duluth News Tribune reports most of Minnesota’s forested areas have seen above-normal rainfall. Last summer was a much different story. Saturday marks the one-year anniversary of the Pagami Creek fire east of Ely.

Professors say appeals court erred on BWCA cell tower ruling

Six law professors from four universities in two states said this week that the Minnesota Court of Appeals was wrong to allow a 450-foot cell phone tower on the edge of the Boundary Waters wilderness and asked the state Supreme Court to review the case, the Star Tribune is reporting. The state's high court has not yet indicated whether it will hear the case between AT&T and the Friends of the Boundary Waters.