Environmental committee puts funding focus on invasive species - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Environmental committee puts funding focus on invasive species

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ST. PAUL (KTTC) -- An environmental committee is urging legislators to take notice and stop the threat of invasive species.

On Wednesday, members of the Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources (LCCMR) decided on 48 projects they believe the 2013 Minnesota legislature should invest in and there's a strong emphasis on invasive species.

More than $36.6 million would come from the Minnesota Lottery generated Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund.

Selected projects address issues facing Minnesota's land, water, fish and wildlife.

26% of the recommendations are for projects that would battle aquatic invasive species, including zebra mussels and Asian carp.

A large chunk of that money (about $8.7 million) the LCCMR wants to see go towards the new Aquatic Invasive Species Research Center at the University of Minnesota.

The center would help develop new techniques to control Asian carp and zebra mussels.

Also, another 2% would focus on terrestrial invasive species, like Emerald Ash Borer.

Recommendations will go before the 2013 legislature for consideration and approval during the legislative session beginning on January 8.

Projects that are approved will begin on July 1, 2013.

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