Make Every Day Earth Day

As Minnesotans took part in Earth Day events over the weekend, many took time to look at the impact they are having on the environment. I encourage everyone to do the same.
Earth Day’s founder, Sen. Gaylord Nelson, once said, “Our goal is not just an environment of clean air and water and scenic beauty. The objective is an environment of decency, quality, and mutual respect for all other human beings and all other living creatures.” Sen. Nelson’s hope was that a new culture would be created in the United States that encouraged people to respect our natural resources.
Throughout the east metro, cities and counties are doing their part to make Sen. Nelson’s dream a reality:
• Maplewood, Oakdale and White Bear Lake have been participating in a program called “GreenStep Cities”. Minnesota GreenStep Cities is a voluntary challenge, assistance and recognition program to help cities achieve their sustainability goals through implementation of 28 best practices. To see how you can help and to find out more information about the program, visit their website at greenstep.pca.state.mn.us.
• North Saint Paul is one of eleven Minnesota cities taking part in the “Hometown WindPower” Program. Hometown WindPower is an initiative of the Minnesota Municipal Power Agency (MMPA) with member utilities in several communities throughout the state. The turbines generate clean, renewable electricity while helping each local community become more aware of clean and sustainable energy production. For more information on the program, visit North Saint Paul’s website at http://www.ci.north-saint-paul.mn.us.
• Ramsey County’s website (www.co.ramsey.mn.us) offers an “A to Z Disposal Guide” for information on the safe and responsible disposal of household items. We need to be conscious of what we throw away and what can be recycled, composted, or handled in special ways and this guide provides this necessary information.
• Washington County’s website (www.co.washington.mn.us) offers information on backyard composting options. Composting is an easy way for you to help the environment. By composting, you recycle organic materials, save valuable resources, and reduce the burden on our waste-disposal system. Check out their website for more information.
The way we live affects our world and we need to be aware of the impact we are having. If we all do our part and make every day Earth Day, we can make our planet a better place to live for everyone on it. If you are interested in ways to get involved every day, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) website (www.epa.gov) contains a link to their “Green Tips” Podcast. From composting to tips on driving, the podcast will help you lower you carbon footprint.
As always, please contact me with questions or suggestions about any issue. Please visit my Senate website at senate.mn/senatorwiger. I also encourage you to visit me at the Capitol, or let me know if you’d like me to stop by your home or apartment. Also, please tune in to my local cable TV show, “Your Capitol: What’s Up?,” which appears on public access channels 15 and 16.
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Senator Chuck Wiger
Chuck Wiger represents District 43, which includes portions of Ramsey and Washington counties in the northeastern Twin Cities metropolitan area.

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