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This view of the Mississippi River Gorge, taken in August 2005, shows two unloaded barges being pushed downstream while an excursion boat in the background works its way upstream.

Mississippi River Gorge - Endangered

It’s been written here before: the University of Minnesota has a responsibility to its place, in the homeland of Dakota people, within the boundaries of a National Park, and on the banks of one of the world’s great rivers.  This week, the Mississippi River Gorge, including that stretch of the

New flood maps could be good news for many New Orleans-area flood-insurance customers who can now type their addresses into the National Flood Insurance Program freliminary flood map web sites to determine their new base flood elevation requirements.

Resilience: The “New Sustainability” or Something More?

Our program’s web site home page offers that the University of Minnesota “is a model for developing future-oriented, resilient relationships between communities and water.”  That statement begs the question, though: What exactly is, or might be, a “resilient” relationship between water and

Aerial photo of the Great Lakes region by NASA.

Freshwater Stories

Both the topic of water and the medium of stories are having a “moment” right now.  The water conversations across professional sectors are rich, and becoming more inclusive.  The use of the term “story” as a means of organizing and sharing knowledge is likewise growing, both in campus

: Postcard view of Harriet Island and public baths/swimming beach, first decade of the 20th century.

#TBT: Layers of Landscape at Harriet Island

It’s one thing to say that our landscapes are made up of layers of past activities and value structures, but quite another thing to explore, in detail, how those layers have been put down, what has been “erased” by successive layers, what elements endure, and, perhaps most challengingly,

“Fugitive Negroes [sic] , fording Rappahannock river following Pope’s retreat, August 1862” contributed to the Umbra Search collection by @ The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Photography Collection. The New York Public

Environmental History is Black History

As the official "Black History Month" comes to a close, we are mindful that environmental history is Black history, and, more specifically, that the histories of our waters are deeply intertwined with the histories of Black communities.  This 

This image shows men harvesting mussels through the ice near LeClaire Iowa around the turn of the 20th century.  The regional fishery (mussel-ry?) for mussels was in high gear at this point, with a market for pearl buttons on men’s and women’s clothing fu

#TBT: Mussels and the Mississippi

Very quick note today about one of the most-overlooked species of animals living in the Mississippi: mussels.  My friend and colleague Jessica Kozarek of the St. Anthony Falls Laboratory wrote a lot more about them in this article