abc
QUICK LINKS:

St. Louis River Reaches First Step Toward Recovery

Updated: 08/29/2014 6:18 PM
Created: 08/29/2014 4:41 PM WDIO.com
By: Briggs LeSavage
blesavage@wdio.com

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced Friday that the St. Louis River is one step closer to being delisted as an area of concern along the Great Lakes.

Susan Hedman, EPA's regional administrator and Great Lakes National Program Manager, said the first of nine environmental impairments, which originally put the river on the Areas of Concern list, has been lifted one year ahead of schedule. The first impairment included removing sediments and repairing the river's habitat. 

The St. Louis River is one of 43 contaminated sites on the Great Lakes designated as a Great Lakes Area of Concern by the United States and Canada under the 1987 Great lakes Water Quality Agreement. 

Hedman said $33 million in funding gathered since the 1990s from the U.S Army Corps of Engineers, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Minnesota and Wisconsin helped reach this goal.  Federal funding accounts for $24 million of that, some coming from the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative. 

"Today, you don't see any oil or tar residue floating on the river, there's no floating grain dust and no foam and the river no longer smells like oil," Hedman said. "Today, the river and the harbor look great because of the outstanding teamwork by local state and federal agencies."

Congressmen Rick Nolan (D-Minn.) and Sean Duffy (R-Wis.) worked together across state and party lines to help make restoration funding a reality.  

The rest of the eight remaining projects include assisting with fish tumors and deformities, beach closings and body contact restrictions and fish consumption advisories. They hope to have the St. Louis River delisted from the Area of Concerns by 2025. 

Front Page

  • Thousands Flock for Two Harbors Beargrease Marathon Start

    About 45 teams of mushers and dogs took off on the John Beargrease Marathon trail in Two Harbors Sunday afternoon to cheers from thousands of spectators, despite a departure from the traditional race start at Duluth East High School...

  • Wisconsin Lawmaker Hopes to End 'Vaping' Indoors

    Lawmakers are set to reignite conversations this week about whether vaping - using electronic cigarettes and other vapor smoking devices - should be included in Wisconsin's smoking ban. The ban took effect in 2010. It outlaws smoking in all public indoor locations, including restaurants and bars.

  • Campground Fees Rise this Year at Michigan State Parks

    Fees at state-operated campgrounds in Michigan are going up this year to cover higher costs and pay for maintenance projects. Parks and recreation chief Ron Olson of the Department of Natural Resources says the amount of the increase at a particular site depends on its popularity.

  • Minnesota Guard Not Going to Liberia After All

    Members of the Minnesota National Guard have learned they won't be going to Liberia to help the U.S. military's response to the Ebola outbreak in West Africa. Soldiers from the Rosemount-based 34th Red Bull Infantry Division were supposed to go to Liberia this year in support of Operation United Assistance.

  • One Man Dead After Car Accident in Aitkin County

    A 47-year-old man died after his vehicle was broadsided in east-central Minnesota on Saturday night. The incident happened at the intersection of Highway 18 and Highway 65 in Aitkin County at 9:35 p.m.

 
Advertisement