On Thursday, July 20th I met with several Edina residents at a Conservation Minnesota member’s home to talk about water.
Despite the great work happening in Edina and throughout the state, many water bodies in Edina have their share of problems including blue-green algae in Lake Cornelia and elevated salt levels in Nine Mile Creek.
Fortunately, it’s not all bad. There are many ways we can all work together to improve water quality. Some of the best ideas we came up at our meeting included increasing the use of “smart” irrigation systems to better manage water use on lawns and in parks, as well as reducing the amount of pesticide used on parks and open spaces to prevent pollution.
Working with our neighbors and leaders is key to changing minds to take a more proactive and preventative mindset when it comes to water issues. In other words, rather than taking a “wait and see” approach to changes that could damage our waters, it would make sense to focus instead on how to protect them now and prevent the sort of changes that would make the situation worse from happening in the first place. After all, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
The meeting in Edina was a great learning experience and is just one of many different meetings on water issues I will be holding in Bloomington, Edina, Brooklyn Park and other communities all over the west metro. Several local residents came out and we were able to have a frank and honest discussion both about the problems Edina is facing when it comes to protecting its bodies of water, as well as discuss possible solutions.
We at Conservation Minnesota are facilitating these meeting as part of Governor Dayton’s new 25 by 25 Water Quality Goal. 25 by 25 has the stated goal of improving our State’s water quality 25 percent by 2025. As the governor likes to put it this isn’t a new regulation. But instead it’s a call to action to find ways to get us to the point where in aggregate that state’s waters will see a 25 percent improvement overall by 2025.
25 by 25 is an ambitious goal, which is why the Governor is looking to hold 10 meetings to engage folks from all over the state with all different backgrounds on ways to work together to meet it. This includes reaching out to everyone from farmers to local governments, business to policy experts and everyone in between who are interested in collaborating on ways to define and meet 25 by 25.
People interested in getting more involved can attend one of these meetings that are being held all over the state from now through October. These meetings are a great chance both to learn more about water issues affecting your community, as well as give the Governor’s staff feedback on the biggest water related problems in your community. And offer suggestions for how we can make progress towards the 25 by 25 goal.
In addition, if you’re interested joining a future meeting or holding your own feel free to contact me at JohnA@ConservationMinnesota.org or 612 767 1571 to talk about setting up a conversation in your community, or feel free to submit your ideas online.