5 need-to-knows about Mississippi River Nutrient Pollution in 2019 and how you can help

Nutrients are essential for life, right? Yes. So, what’s the issue? What do you mean nutrient pollution? Nutrient pollution is what we are seeing in our waterways today. It’s jeopardizing clean drinking water for 20 million people in the Mississippi River Basin and it fuels the notorious Gulf of Mexico hypoxic (low to no oxygen) ‘Dead Zone’. Algae Bloom – Photo Credit- Brenda Culler -ODNR Coastal...

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More Action for the Gulf Hypoxia Action Plan

The Gulf Hypoxia Task Force met in Baton Rouge, Louisiana on May 16. It was a gathering with some historical significance. The Task Force, composed of states along the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers and key federal agencies, last met in that city in October 2000, when the participants signed the first version of the Action Plan for Reducing Hypoxia in the Gulf of Mexico. Nutrient pollution in the Gulf of Mexico caused by runoff from about 40...

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The Muddy & Flood-y Mississippi River

Drone footage provided by Alex Fisher The powerful energy our river provides is often underestimated until the waters begin to rise. The beginning of our spring proved this to be true, contributing to record flooding in Nebraska, and challenging historic levels in Iowa. Where I am located, in Alton, Illinois, we are looking to crest at 35.5 feet on May 4, which is just seven feet shy of our record crest in 1993, 42.2 feet. Hoses line...

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Keep the Connections in the Clean Water Act

by Kelly McGinnis, Director of the Mississippi River Network America’s longest river flows for 2300 miles, from Lake Itasca to the Gulf of Mexico. But the Mississippi’s central channel is part of a larger system that includes tributaries like the Illinois River, along with streams, wetlands, oxbow lakes, aquifers, and estuaries. This river system involves surface and subsurface water flows that help meet the varied needs of our society:...

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Entitlement and Privilege

Entitlement and Privilege   Freshwater is the one essential resource that every living thing has to have. No matter what you are, what complexion, what you believe in, where you come from, who you voted for, what you do, how rich, how poor- we are all entitled to have freshwater. Industries are constantly buying land connected to the river, building silos, docks, conveyer belts and natural gas hubs and tapping into the approximately 1.5...

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“Do it for the dolphins!”: Relieving Our Rivers One Bag at a Time

Every time I’ve thrown my laptop in my backpack and set off for the Mississippi sunset to put a couple words down, I instead end up with the same blank screen and a green, Missouri Stream Teams bag full of mostly Styrofoam, jugs, broken glass, and the occasional propane tank.  At times, this pattern of distractions has been a curse, especially when I lose track of time, forcing me to rush to the office before the doors lock at 7 P.M.  While...

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Farm Fresh, Just Around the Corner

Soon, the seasons will be changing again into my personal favorite – spring. Springtime brings nature to life again from the dormant, cold winter. The rains and melting of northern snows bring a bursting Mississippi River to all the cities and towns along the way. This also means it is time for local farmers to begin planting delicious fruits and vegetables. Many farmers will offer their goods at farmers markets and stands along the side of...

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