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Pro-Mining Unions and Businesses Rip Forest Service “Charade”

Northern Minnesotans came out swinging this week in the Star Tribune, ripping the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management on mining. The tough talk came via a full-page ad announcing a boycott by a coalition of 17 union, civic and business groups of the federal agencies' public hearing in the Twin Cities on Tuesday. We’re fed up with jumping through federal hoops, burning gas, vacation days and family time to sit through your endless, taxpayer-funded meetings. It’s death by a thousand cuts. Anger and frustration over a last-minute Obama administration regulation banning mineral exploration in the national forest and reevaluating the...

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Pollution Agency Advises Against High Carbon Vacations

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency wants you to think twice about that summer vacation you've been looking forward to. As many of you embark on long-awaited summer vacations, remember to do so sustainably! It’s easy to forget the huge carbon cost of travel—one yearly vacation can cancel out a year’s worth of sustainable lifestyle choices. Luckily, many people are concerned about this problem. A recent survey showed that 67% of Americans think eco-friendly travel is important. Fortunately, the agency's latest Living Green 365 newsletter provides tips on how to literally go green and "take your vacation without the guilt". But you should strongly...

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Minnesota Joins States Fighting Plastic Bag Ban

Minnesota routinely receives national recognition for leading the way among the states on environmental issues. But today the Wall Street Journal singled out the state for being at the forefront of a different sort of preservation campaign--the preservation of plastic bags as an option in the checkout line. In an article headlined "Bans Over Plastic Bags Face a Growing Backlash" the paper noted momentum has shifted away from bans and restrictions on plastic bags that started in predictably liberal cities and states. Activists claim plastic bags harm the environment more than paper and reusable bags. Business groups are fighting back against plastic...

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As Minneapolis plastic bag ban nears, state agency says environmental benefits of paper over plastic is a myth

A Minneapolis ban on plastic bags is set to take effect on June 1.  According to a city news release, the purpose of the ban is "to reduce the litter, waste, environmental impacts and expense of managing carryout bags." No doubt city council members feel pretty good about themselves.  But feeling good and doing good are, of course, two different things.  It turns out the plastic bag ban likely won't deliver the environmental benefits advocates claim. The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) recently posted an article busting seven green myths,  the seventh myth being the belief that paper bags are environmentally superior...

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American Energy Will Restore Prosperity, If We Let It

To be sure, America faces many tough cultural challenges ahead, beginning with fatherless households, failing schools, and violent crime.  But economically and environmentally, the future could be so very bright, especially if we don’t allow liberal fear-mongering to carry the day. You’d think that green activists would be in a better mood after the U.S., in 2012, met its Kyoto CO2 emissions targets proposed in 1997, even though the U.S. never even ratified the treaty.  And energy-related CO2 emissions for the first six months of 2016 were the lowest since 1991, thanks to the amazing technological breakthrough of hydraulic fracturing.  So...

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After being sued for defamation, Greenpeace admits its claims are hyperbole and not factual

Greenpeace is sure singing a different tune now that they are being held accountable in court for their baseless claims by Resolute, a Canadian forest-products company.  According to Richard Garneau, Resolute’s President and CEO: A funny thing happened when Greenpeace and allies were forced to account for their claims in court. They started changing their tune. Their condemnations of our forestry practices “do not hew to strict literalism or scientific precision,” as they concede in their latest legal filings. Their accusations against Resolute were instead “hyperbole,” “heated rhetoric,” and “non-verifiable statements of subjective opinion” that should not be taken “literally” or expose...

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Minneapolis City Council Considering Rubber Mulch Ban

Using recycled rubber tires as mulch for playgrounds and infill for athletic fields could come to a screeching halt.   According to the Star Tribune, the Minneapolis City Council is debating whether or not to ban and remove the fall-cushioning ground cover from play areas because of “health concerns.” Studies regarding the material’s toxicity are still underway. Yet, Council Member Cam Gordon feels he "doesn't need to wait for other studies" because he is "convinced the stuff is potentially dangerous enough."  Another concern should be what role the city has, if any, in making these decisions. “We are the recreation experts, the city is not,”...

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