Program Policy Statement — 2019
Pollinator species like bees and butterflies are in decline locally and globally, and the Closed Landfill Program (CLP) is stepping up to help. Many foods grown in the United States are produced with the help of pollinating insects. They are an essential part of our ecosystem. The decline in many pollinator species is due, in part, to a decline in habitat and the increased use of herbicides and pesticides on crops and lawns.
The CLP realizes the important opportunity we have to do our part to support and create vital pollinator habitat. We currently manage 110 closed landfills on roughly 8,500 acres of land throughout Minnesota. Improving pollinator habitat and decreasing the amount of chemicals we spray will help not only pollinators but a number of other species, including other insects, mammals, birds, and humans.
Closed landfills in Minnesota contribute methane, carbon dioxide (CO2), and other greenhouse gases to the atmosphere through waste decomposition. Some of those greenhouse gases are captured and destroyed at landfills with flares but much of it is still passively venting into the atmosphere. Pollinators help promote the growth of new plants that naturally remove CO2 from the air, and store carbon in the soil.
The CLP Pollinator Strategy is guided by Executive Order 19-28 signed on April 5, 2019 by Governor Tim Walz. The executive order states, in part:
“The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency ("MPCA") will manage closed landfills under its supervision to create, protect, and enhance pollinator habitat.”
The efforts described in the CLP Pollinator Strategy are also supported and encouraged by the Interagency Pollinator Protection Team (IPPT), which is comprised of state agency experts from Minnesota Departments of Administration, Agriculture, Corrections, Education, Health, Natural Resources, and Transportation, the Environmental Quality Board, the Minnesota Board of Soil and Water Resources, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, and the Minnesota Zoo. IPPT members are tasked to work with their respective organizations to take immediate actions to restore pollinator health in the state.
The CLP Pollinator Strategy is intended to support the IPPT desired outcome of “healthy, diverse pollinator populations that can sustain and enhance Minnesota’s environment, economy, and quality of life” as stated in the IPPT’s 2018 pollinator report.
The CLP Pollinator Strategy follows three goals identified by the IPPT.
|Goal 1: Lands throughout Minnesota support healthy, diverse, and abundant pollinator populations.
|Goal 2: Minnesotans use pesticides judiciously and only when necessary, in order to reduce the harm to pollinators from pesticides while retaining economic strength.
|Goal 3: Minnesota understands values, and actively supports pollinators populations.
As always, the CLP’s primary mission is to reduce risk at closed landfills and protect people living and working near them. We are shifting our existing land management approach to one that will more effectively create, enhance, and protect pollinators and pollinator habitat. It is our way of caring for the environment into the future.
For more information about the CLP's Pollinator Strategy, contact: