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Jay Lawton, Willmar, Minn.
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I don’t know the comparable readership between general news and sports, but Dennis Anderson’s conservation columns deserve to be read by every reader. On Feb. 22, he wrote about a new report on wetlands loss in the Upper Midwest.
He notes that we are going the way of Iowa, losing wetlands to crops at an alarming rate. This is bad for sport hunters, conservationists, water users and farmers. Who is at fault?
Our farm bill encourages farmers who otherwise would protect vulnerable land to convert it to row crops. Amazingly high land prices force larger farms that are driven by money. Small and beginning farmers, and those who would raise other crops, are squeezed out.
Anderson noted that hunters can no longer rely only on their organizations to carry the fight. It is time for them and conservation organizations in general to bury their fights on other issues and unite to protect a disappearing resource.
Ray Schmitz, Rochester
I disagreed with most everything in Bonnie Blodgett’s Feb. 17 column but the sentence that takes the cake is “we are at core a rogue nation, quite possibly the most irresponsible in world history” (“On pipeline, a betrayal may be delivered”). Does this include Hitler’s Germany, Russia’s Stalin or China’s Mao?
DAVE SPILSETH, Orono
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The Keystone XL pipeline isn’t an environmentally sound project. Saying that the inevitable oil spills would be “readily cleanable” is wishful thinking. Pipelines leak. Underground oil spills can go undetected for long periods and contaminate drinking water. This is preventable. We should stop Keystone XL for going forward and focus on reducing our use of nonrenewable sources of energy.
BETTY TISEL, Minneapolis
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Congratulations to the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency and the state’s industries for realizing a substantial reduction in mercury emissions (“Minnesota mercury emissions cut in half,” Feb. 19).
As your eastward, downwind neighbor, Wisconsin is grateful for your efforts. It will behoove us to apply ourselves to following your example, reducing this highly problematic toxin and passing on the benefits to our own neighbors.
DENNIS APPLETON, Madison, Wis.
The Opinion section is produced by the Editorial Department to foster discussion about key issues. The Editorial Board represents the institutional voice of the Star Tribune and operates independently of the newsroom.