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Map of Minnesota Waterways
Need a visual reference to the rivers and cities mentioned in the MPR News reports?

Join the conversation: River Management
"To me it seems completely unacceptable that we knowingly poison the water we drink and the air we breathe, especially when in many cases there are non-toxic alternatives available. This is exactly the sort of pervasive heath issue that cannot easily be dealt with by the individual and does require strong government leadership."
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River Groups Respond
We asked river advocacy groups across the region to answer, from their perspectives, 13 questions that are important for citizens and policymakers to think about. Read their responses here.

Mainstreet Radio Remote Broadcast
On May 8, from the shores of the Crow River in Rockford, Minnnesota, host Rachel Reabe spoke with callers and guests about the global and regional impact of rivers in the region.
Listen (hour 1)
Listen (hour 2)

What's your favorite river in Minnesota? Hear two segments, played during the Mainstreet broadcast, which answer this question:
Listen (part 1)
Listen (part 2)

Changing Course: The Future of the Mississippi River
In this MPR News project from August 2000, learn about the river and the people who work and live on it.

Agriculture, industry and navigation are challenging the region's rivers and streams. The debate has been the same for 100 years. Are our rivers a resource for recreation and preservation, or simply for industry to use? How can those competing interests keep our rivers healthy?

The Mississippi River: Saving threatened species
Erin Galbally
Over the last century, the Army Corps of Engineers has transformed the Mississippi River. A series of locks and dams have made a reliable highway for commercial barge traffic, but many of the river's native species have suffered.
The Missouri River: The future of an endangered river
Cara Hetland
Along the Missouri River, the contentious topic is water level. The fight is about who should benefit from the way the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers manages the river - those who rely on it for navigation, or recreation.
Development along the river
The Mississippi: Competing uses
William Wilcoxen
Most of our region's biggest cities are located on waterways. Residents have relied on rivers for drinking water, transportation, and industrial power. We've modified rivers to meet our needs. But those changes are coming under scrutiny as we learn more about their impact.
The Mississippi: Turning back toward the river
Tim Post
Over the years communities who relied on the Mississippi River for power and transportation turned their backs on the river. People ignored the natural resource to focus on development away from the water. But now cities are finding new value in their rivers.
The agriculture industry's effects
The Minnesota River: Ten years of cleaning up
Mark Steil
The Minnesota River is one of the largest streams in the state - and one of the dirtiest. Ten years ago, Minnesota's then-governor, Arne Carlson, announced an ambitious plan to clean up its muddy waters. His goal was to make the river "swimmable and fishable" in a decade. Those 10 years are almost up.
The Root River: Trout vs. ethanol
Laurel Druley
Supporters of a planned expansion of an ethanol plant in Preston say it will be a boon for farmers in southeast Minnesota. But some are concerned about the potential threat the expansion might pose to the Root River, one of Minnesota's best trout streams.
The Straight River: In the shadow of a corporate farm
Dan Gunderson
The Straight River near Park Rapids is a rare northern Minnesota trout fishery. It's also an area where crops are heavily irrigated. Natural resource managers find themselves walking a fine line - protecting the fish without harming the farmers.
The St. Croix River: Preserving its natural state
Jeff Horwich
The St. Croix River is clean, quiet and is rich in spectacular views, wildlife and history. Twin Cities commuters are pushing east, and the St. Croix now winds through one of the fastest-growing parts of the state. Those who care about the river are trying to keep their good thing going.
The Red River: Famous for floods and catfish
Bob Reha
For the people who live along the Red River of the North, the stream is one of two things - a flooding nightmare or a world-class fishery. It's always the flooding that gets the most attention. But for years, outdoor magazines and sport fishing groups have consistently ranked the Red as one of the nation's best catfishing streams.
The French River: Restoring native fish
Stephanie Hemphill
Lake trout are making a comeback in Lake Superior. The restoration success story is welcome news to anglers and environmentalists. Now, some people are turning their attention to another native trout, the coaster brook trout. That species has been struggling to survive in Lake Superior and its tributaries for more than 100 years.

Rivers Week programming and activities are supported by the Blandin Foundation
Blandin Foundation