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The first half of the largest land conservation deal in Wisconsin history officially closed Friday, protecting 70 square miles of undeveloped forest. The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources now holds conservation easements on the forest land in Douglas, Bayfield, Burnett and Washburn counties in an $11.3 million deal spurred by The Conservation Fund. The 45,000-acre area, now called the Brule-St. Croix Legacy Forest, includes the headwaters of the St.
Bea Kehr was expecting more out of Tropical Storm Isaac as it whizzed past Tampa and the Republican National Convention on Monday. After the convention was delayed one day amid much pre-storm hoopla, the soon-to-be hurricane mostly missed northern Florida and was instead aiming at Louisiana. "It was about as windy as a Minnesota snowstorm, without any snow," said Kehr, of Duluth, a delegate to the convention. Kehr and Kevin Erickson of Mountain Iron, who spoke to the News Tribune by phone Monday, are two of just three delegates from the 8th Congressional District to attend the national conv
The Minnesota Department of Transportation will host a public open house Aug. 29 on the future lighting for the Blatnik Bridge spanning the harbor between Duluth and Superior. The decorative lights outlining the bridge's main arch were rusting and failing when they were shut off and removed this year during construction on the bridge.
Minnesota Power's system of reservoirs and dams along the St. Louis River leading into the Twin Ports is holding well despite massive amounts of water pouring through, officials said this afternoon. Utility officials say there are no problems with any of the four dams along the lower river -- including the Fond du Lac, Thomson, Scanlon and Knife Falls dams between Cloquet and Duluth. "There are no problems, no failures; the system is designed to handle this kind of flood and more," Amy Rutledge, spokeswoman for the Duluth-based utility, said. Stream flow on the St.
A Lakeville, Minn., man and his twin engine airplane were still missing Monday night with few clues on where he may have gone or why. Michael Arthur Bratlie, 67, a seasoned pilot with thousands of hours of U.S. Navy and airline flight time, went missing Friday night apparently somewhere north of Duluth. Air, ground and water searches over the weekend and again Monday turned up no sign of the twin engine Piper PA-31 Navajo. "There's no good news tonight," said Capt. George Supan of the Civil Air Patrol as the last search planes were landing as night fell. Maj.
A 13-year-old Duluth teen underwater in Lake Superior for more than 30 minutes was clinging to life in a Duluth hospital late Monday after being rescued just off shore. Jeffrey Carlos Watson Jr. had been swimming with friends near the old concrete structure called the cribs, or Uncle Harvey's Mausoleum, just off Duluth's Lakewalk waterfront trail when he went under and didn't surface. Friends called 911 about 4:15 Monday afternoon, and crews from the Duluth Fire Department, the U.S. Coast Guard, St. Louis County Sheriff's deputies, the St.
After 30 months of violating Wisconsin standards for sewage discharge into Lake Superior, the city of Washburn finally might have brought its sewage treatment plant back into compliance. It appears a complete shutdown, cleaning, inspection and restart of the plant in March might have been the solution to a problem that had vexed city and state officials for more than two years. The plant remained in violation through May, but a lab report issued last week showed the plant's wastewater finally below state limits for most pollutants. Phosphorus levels dropped from 4.5 milligrams per liter in
The city of Washburn has been violating Wisconsin sewage release regulations for more than two years but may be moving toward compliance after months of effort to tweak its sewage treatment plant. The 15-year-old plant suddenly stopped working in December 2009 and started sending up to 300,000 gallons of partially treated sewage into Lake Superior's Chequamegon Bay every day -- with contaminants far in excess of state regulations. The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources issued a notice of non-compliance to the city after four months of violations and in June 2010 slapped a moratorium o
The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources announced today that it will purchase conservation easements on 67,346 acres of forest in Douglas, Bayfield, Burnett and Washburn counties from the Lyme St. Croix Forest Company. DNR officials said it is the largest such conservation deal in state history. The purchase -- to be known as the Brule-St. Croix Legacy Forest -- is located at the headwaters of the St. Croix and Bois-Brule rivers and contains 80 small lakes and ponds, 14 miles of streams and globally unique pine barrens habitat.
If you build it, or at least keep dogs and gulls away, they will come. That's the hope along a swath of Lake Superior shoreline in Douglas County this summer under a federally funded program to restore piping plovers, Wisconsin's rarest bird. The St. Louis River Alliance is organizing the effort under a five-year, $250,000 grant from the U.S.