Putting Drinking Water First in Minnesota

Putting Drinking Water First: Clean Water Action believes that everyone has a right to safe and affordable drinking water. We are making drinking water impacts a primary consideration when developing regulations and other programs involving upstream activities that can impact downstream drinking water sources.

  • Water Infrastructure Investments: Dangerously outdated infrastructure remains a huge threat to our lakes, rivers, streams and drinking water quality. From combined sewer overflows to old lead service lines, our water infrastructure needs to be updated to protect water resources for future generations.
  • Tracking Contaminants of Emerging Concern:  People and industry use tens of thousands of chemicals. A vast array of these chemicals has been found in the environment, where we consider them contaminants of emerging concern or CECs. Most of these CECs have not been fully evaluated for the risks they might pose to the environment— or to our health.
  • Reducing Lead Exposure- Lead is a highly poisonous metal and can affect almost every organ in the body and the nervous system. The wide spread contamination of drinking water in Flint, MI, has also raised many concerns about lead in our drinking water and in public places such as schools. We are working to enact policies that will reduce our exposure to lead and make Minnesota Lead Free.
  • Reducing Salt in our Water: In winter, salt is applied to roads and walkways to melt ice and snow — this is where most of the chloride in our water comes from. The salt dissolves, runs into storm drains, and most storm drains go directly into local waterways.
  • Protecting Groundwater: Nearly 75% of Minnesotans get their drinking water from groundwater sources. To protect groundwater the legislature passed the Groundwater Protection Act in 1989.
Corroded pipe with lead service fittings. Credit: Mike Thomas / Creative Commons

Minnesota Guide to Lead in Our Drinking Water and Lead Service Lines

Learn more about lead, what it is, how it gets into our homes, and what you can do about it below. 

Lake Erie Algal Bloom - August 2015. Photo Credit: NOAA Great Lakes CoastWatch

Water Infrastructure in the Great Lakes:

Turning the “Rust Belt” into the “Water Belt”

Beakers. Photo credit: Africa Studios / Shutterstock

Contaminants of Emerging Concern (CEC): An Early Warning Sign

People and industry use tens of thousands of chemicals.

Protecting Groundwater in Minnesota

Clean Water Action believes that everyone has a right to safe and affordable drinking water.

To make this a reality, it is vital to put drinking water first. To do that it is important that elected and appointed officials at every level of government make decisions with drinking water in mind. That means they consider the downstream impacts on drinking water sources of agricultural, industrial, and every day activities and that protecting  drinking water sources. 

From We All Live Downstream

Plant-based diets are healthy for you and the planet.
November 19, 2020

How to transition towards a plant-based diet to reduce your water footprint & eat healthier for yourself and the planet

In recent years, many people have started to pay attention to the science that shows the harmful effects that their heavy meat diets have on the land, animals, and water usage. A plant based diet --consisting of foods derived from plants – is generally found to be better for your health and the planet.  A plant based diet includes vegetables, grains, nuts, seeds, legumes, and fruits - with little to no animal products.

 

Minnesota’s Great Lakes Day team meeting with Republican U.S. Representative Jim Hagedorn (CD-1)
March 24, 2020

Clean Water Action Minnesota was in DC to talk about and support the GLRI Act of 2019 and advocated for significantly increasing federal funding for clean water and safe drinking water programs. The GLRI Act would provide stability for Great Lakes funding for at least five years, provide secure and stable funding, and will encourage more state and local governments, as well as private businesses, to invest in protection and restoration across the Great Lakes basin. 

October 13, 2019

Polls consistently show that people consider drinking water one of the most important public health and environmental issues we face. But policies at the local, state, and federal level do not always reflect this. We think that should change and that we need to act like drinking water matters, we need to put drinking water first.  This approach is at the core of Clean Water Action’s programs and campaigns.