DNR researchers have relied on time-consuming and expensive surveys to compile that information. But they are rethinking that approach in favor of the nearly ubiquitous smartphone.
The ban, which firefighters supported, takes effect July 2018 and bans four flame-retardant chemicals from children's products and upholstered furniture.
Environmental groups complain that, even though the bill includes language on buffers to protect state waterways, it would delay water quality rules, hurt bees and go easy on polluters.
As the 2015 legislative session draws to a close, environmentalists are concerned that a budget deal could harm efforts to protect Minnesota's lakes and rivers and develop clean energy.
The compromise will temporarily prevent state regulators from forcing companies to invest in new treatment technologies to protect wild rice.
Decades ago, firefighters were in favor of adding chemicals to furniture and other products that would make things burn more slowly. But now, they say those same chemicals are making firefighters sick.
Des Moines Water Works CEO Bill Stowe said nitrates are a growing problem. Faced with paying for technology that can remove nitrates, Des Moines is suing over agricultural drainage.
Under the Senate bill, manufacturers would have several years to phase out the plastic, which has been found in fish. The House passed a different version of the bill.
Six and a half years after Minnesotans voted to raise taxes to clean up lakes and streams, it's clear the state has a long way to go.
Nine Minnesota counties where pollution from vehicle exhaust, power plant emissions and wood burning is tracked scored well on an annual American Lung Association report.
A study published in the journal Science combined the effects of human influences and biodiversity to help researchers learn about what makes for a stable ecosystem over time.
State natural resources officials want the Legislature to spend another $4 million in the next two years to manage the state's forests. It's not clear if they'll get it.
With no chance of her mining bill passing in the Republican-controlled Congress, U.S. Rep. Betty McCollum aims to pressure the Obama administration to protect the area.
In the spirit of spring cleaning, find out what to do with old televisions and other electronics crowding your home.
Minnesota is a leader in electronics recycling, thanks in part to a law requiring manufacturers to take responsibility for their disposal. But some of us keep old gadgets a long time.