Conservation Minnesota

Spotlight: Results. Not Excuses.

Conservation Minnesota is ensuring future generations can enjoy everything our state has to offer.  We’ve worked with Minnesotans on a wide range of successful campaigns that are making a real difference.  Whether it’s cleaner water,  reducing waste, protecting wildlife, or getting more power from wind, we work for practical solutions that make us all better off in the long run.  It’s all part of our mission: Protecting the Minnesota You Love.

At Conservation Minnesota we have good news to share with you, and we’re thankful for the support you’ve provided to help us achieve these results.

  • No Clear-Cutting of State Parks

Should we balance the state budget by turning some of our state parks into logging operations? During the 2011 legislative session a handful of legislators thought so, and a provision  requiring the harvest of black walnut trees in two state parks was added to the House environment budget bill. Within a few days, our media and grassroots outreach campaign resulted in hundreds of calls to legislators.  The House promptly removed the measure from the bill, protecting state parks from being clear-cut for profit.

  • Children enjoy a scavenger hunt along the Mississippi River. This event was part of the Minneapolis Legacy Destination Weekend.

    Defending the Legacy

In 2008, Minnesotans overwhelmingly passed the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment, with more Minnesotans voting to increase their taxes than voted for any political candidate. The funding is for water clean up, habitat and wildlife protection, parks and trails support, and arts & cultural heritage.  Conservation Minnesota now leads a broad coalition of sportsmen and environmental groups to ensure the money is spent the way voters intended. We’ve launched and released several analyses to help Minnesotans track the funding and understand its impact.  We are working to ensure transparency and accountability in all Legacy Amendment decisions.

  • Legacy Destinations

In its first two years, the Legacy Amendment has already provided benefits to every one of Minnesota’s 87 counties.  Even with literally thousands of grants and projects underway, most people are still unaware of the impact in their communities.  Conservation Minnesota has partnered with Explore Minnesota, Minnesota Citizens for the Arts, and local Convention and Visitor’s Bureaus around the state to create a series of Legacy Destination weekends. The events celebrate local outdoors, history and arts attractions, showcasing the effects of Legacy Amendment funds in each community.

Our Board and staff are defining our priorities for 2012 right now, so tell us what is important to you by going to our website and taking our survey. Your opinion matters to us.  We want to tackle the issues that are most important to  Minnesotans.

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I believe Legacy funding should not be used for Grant and Aid ATV Trails. These so called trails are nothing but an eroded path in our ditches here in Crow Wing County. Hint, no actual trail is constructed, just access to the ditch is granted. Why ditches? Because they are considered a public right away. Each and every driveway and field approach becomes a ramp or toy for jumping. This erodes the driveways and bottoms of the ditches. These waters are a hazard to our wet lands and other habitat that the funding is suppose to be promoting. In addition, this continued erosion or lack of native grasses in the pathways opens the land to invasive species. For this very reason the State has laws outlining and requiring Storm Water Runoff Permits, yet these trails are operating outside many of the mandates within these laws. Further, we as rural landowners have the right to live without noise, dust and damage to our property or landscape. Unload an ATV and take a cruise around Harriet Island or a landscaped neighborhood in St Paul? Remember, the funding is for water clean up, habitat and wildlife protection; ATV trails support none of these issues.