CALL TO ACTION
Invasive species research needs your support at the Minnesota Legislature
April 24, 2020
MITPPC-funded postdoctoral researchers Mike Schuster (left) and Peter Wragg (right) examine a buckthorn research plot for their project, "Cover it Up!". Led by internationally recognized ecologist Peter Reich, the team is developing strategies that will improve and diversify the native plant community while keeping buckthorn away for good. Together with more than a dozen local partner organizations, Reich’s team is finding that native grasses, wildflowers, sedges, ferns and juvenile trees can provide enough shade to prevent new buckthorn growth.
MITPPC needs your help in requesting action for continued funding of invasive species solutions in Minnesota
In these extraordinary times, MITPPC is facing unprecedented challenge at the Minnesota Legislature – and we need your help.
On Tuesday, April 21, 2020, Minn. Sen. Bill Ingebrigtsen (Chair of the Environment and Natural Resources Finance Committee) announced that the Senate would not be taking a vote on an Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund (ENRTF) bill this legislative session.
At stake is at least $5 million recommended for MITPPC between 2020 and 2025 to continue our work in protecting Minnesota's prairies, forests, wetlands and agricultural resources from terrestrial invasive species. We ask that you please contact members of the Senate and request urgent action.
The Senate’s decision has dire consequences for MITPPC. The Center will be unable to issue a call for research proposals in 2021. As a result, we will be unable to respond to new invasive species threats to the state, like a major new potato disease that was just found in Michigan.
Successful research teams, like the one developing genetic tests to detect Palmer amaranth seeds, will be unable to progress to the next phase of their research. These teams have a strong desire to bring the technology to the field for use. With a year gap in funding, talented postdocs will be forced to leave the University, and productive teams will fall apart.
Please consider contacting the following state Senators to request that they vote on an ENRTF bill:
- SENATOR BILL INGEBRIGTSEN, LCCMR member, Assistant Majority Leader, and Chair of the Environment and Natural Resources Finance Committee
- SENATOR DAVID J. TOMASSONI, LCCMR member and Ranking Minority Member Environment and Natural Resources Finance Committee
- SENATOR GARY H. DAHMS, LCCMR member and Assistant Majority Leader
- SENATOR KARI DZIEDZIC, LCCMR member
- YOUR LOCAL SENATOR, Find out who represents your district online by entering your address at the link.
Below is a template you can customize in your letter:
To date, MITPPC has invested nearly $17 million in terrestrial invasive species research with the support of the Minnesota state government. MITPPC currently supports 38 interdisciplinary, applied research projects.
To learn more about MITPPC research and funding priorities, please visit mitppc.umn.edu.
Heather Koop, Associate Director
Minnesota Invasive Terrestrial Plants & Pests Center (MITPPC)