State of the River
For the week of December 18, 2016
“So, how is the Mississippi River?” asks a new report released by the Friends of the Mississippi River and the National Park Service. Co-authors Trevor Russell and Lark Weller discuss the overall health of the Mississippi and the biggest threats facing the river’s ecosystem.
Guests: Trevor Russell, Water Program Director for Friends of the Mississippi; Lark Weller, Water Quality Coordinator for the National Park Service
Part 1 The 2016 State of the River Report addresses concerns over the health of the Mississippi in language the general public can understand. How healthy is the river? Weller says the report shows a “good news, bad news situation.” While wildlife like bald eagles and muscles have made populations gains, areas of concern are excess sediment, bacteria and phosphorus, as well as an increase in river flows and invasive Asian carp.
Part 2 What can individuals do to help reduce pollution in the river and what policy changes should happen in Minnesota to protect the river, a vital source of drinking water for 1 million Minnesotans? Russell and Weller discus how synthetic clothing and waste like cigarette butts contribute to the amount of harmful microplastic fibers found in the water and the need for better farming practices in the state.