The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) partners with local governments, civic and advocacy organizations, and industry trade associations to advance legislation that ensures every Minnesotan has healthy air, sustainable lands, clean water, and a better climate.
2022 legislative initiatives
Expand Minnesota’s electric vehicle charging network
To meet our state’s goal of reaching 20% electric vehicle use by 2030, Minnesota must prioritize a significant buildout of publicly accessible charging stations. Governor Walz requests $13.8 million to fund a series of electric vehicle fast-charging stations which will expand the capacity of our current charging network and fill gaps between fast chargers. This funding can unlock $68 million in matching federal funds from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.
Address contaminated drinking water wells in Andover
Recent samplings of some private drinking water wells in Andover’s Red Oaks neighborhood show the presence of the contaminants 1,4-dioxane and PFAS above the MDH’s health-based guidance values for drinking water. Governor Walz requests up to $12 million in bonding to design and construct new municipal water mains for a residential area in the city of Andover.
Collect real-time nitrate data in Minnesota waters
Nitrate concentrations have steadily increased in the Mississippi River since the mid-1970s. On average, 158 million pounds of nitrate per year flows through the point where the Mississippi River leaves Minnesota. Governor Walz requests $1 million from the General Fund to design and install a network of 40 nitrate sensors for the continuous, real-time monitoring of nitrates at key locations in the Mississippi, Red River, and St. Louis River basins.
Manage stormwater during extreme weather events
Frequent, heavy rain events have resulted in increased flooding, and in many communities, aging and undersized storm sewers are inadequate for the volume of water they regularly receive. Governor Walz requests $21.1 million to help communities mitigate flood damage and adapt to increasing severe rain events. Projects funded by this program would range from new or enhanced stormwater management systems that will increase storage capacity to establish rain gardens, tree trenches and other natural water management tools.
Help communities and businesses prevent PFAS contamination
Reducing PFAS exposure in our communities is a state and federal priority. In February 2021, the state published the Minnesota PFAS Blueprint that lays out several strategies and possible initiatives to address the proliferation of PFAS in the environment. Governor Walz requests $2 million to establish a PFAS community grant program to fund projects designed to prevent PFAS pollution.
Accelerate local redevelopment of legacy contamination sites
More than 10,000 properties in Minnesota are considered brownfields due to contamination. Governor Walz proposes $1 million to create a state-funded brownfield assessment grant program to support community-based redevelopments located in low-income and traditionally underserved communities throughout Minnesota. Without the critical dollars to assess contaminated sites in underserved communities, they remain blighted, vacant, and underdeveloped.
Protect children from lead and cadmium in toys and household goods
Lead and cadmium are neurotoxins that can cause serious long-term health impacts, including neurological, reproductive, and developmental effects. The proposed policy change restricts the use of lead and cadmium in toys and jewelry and expands the list of regulated goods to include other items used by children and pregnant women, such as dishes, cosmetics, personal care products, school supplies, and other products.
Additional policy, budget, and bonding proposals can be found on the MPCA’s 2022 legislative priorities fact sheet webpage.