It’s nearly a decade since Minnesotans passed the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment, voting in the midst of a deep recession to pay additional taxes primarily to protect the state’s endangered waters. It’s time for something dramatic to happen again, only this time it’s not so much additional money that our water resources need — it’s water management reform.
The Trump administration has dismissed academic leadership from an Environmental Protection Agency scientific review board and has proposed serious financial cuts to state environmental programming. That should signal that we, as Minnesotans, have to take responsibility for our own environment. After all, the federal EPA has been the major engine providing state and local governments with money, mandates and threats to better safeguard ecosystems, especially air and water. Now, that role seems to be seriously fading out. We need to step up.