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Reinventing Environmentalism with Don Parmeter: Congress May Push Back on Expansion of Federal Power over Minnesota Water and Land

The battle over federal jurisdiction of water and lands under the 1972 Federal Water Pollution Control Act is expected to be taken to the floor of the U.S. Senate as early as next week.  The debate has raged between Congress and the Obama Administration since the defeat of the expansive Clean Water Restoration Act, authored by former Minnesota Congressman James Oberstar and former Wisconsin Senator Russ Feingold. (That is a lot of formers.)
Earlier this year, the Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers issued an administrative proposal to expand federal Clean Water Act powers without the consent of Congress. Because there is water almost everywhere in Minnesota, there is no one in the state that would be unaffected by this  unprecedented power grab. 

A bi-partisan bill to rein in EPA regulatory powers was passed by the House this summer, in addition to a bill that would prevent the Corps of Engineers from spending taxpayer money on the proposed expansion of federal jurisdiction.

Similar language is expected to be offered on the senate floor in the form of an amendment to the Energy and Water Appropriations bill by Wyoming Senator John Barrasso and Nevada Senator Dean Heller.

This is encouraging. Stay tuned!

Don Parmeter

November 21, 2011

Reinventing Environmentalism Event this Wed. Oct. 12 at the Kelly Inn with Don Parmeter

If you agree that environmentalism needs a radical change in course, join us for an event tomorrow.

Contact Don Parmeter  (612) 558 – 2859.  Call with any questions or comments.

Reinventing Environmentalism
6-8 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 12
Kelly Inn, St. Paul



1.  Introductions
2.  Additions/changes to the agenda
3.  Review/Update of Issues:
a.   Energy Policy: Something new in the wind?
b.   Status of EPA proposals on Clean Water Act & Clean Air Act
c.    International Joint Commission/EPA plans for northern MN
d.   Heart of the Continent Partnership
e.   President Obama’s Executive Orders
(i)   Rural Council
(ii)  Great America Outdoors
4.   Agenda 21
5.   Proposed Legislation for 2012 Session:
a.  Property Rights (private & public land and water access/use)
b.  Energy and Climate Change
c.  Watershed/Governance Model
d.  Clean Water Legacy Act Amendments
e.  Amending the Boundary Waters Treaty
6.   Proposed Congressional Oversight Hearings in MN
7.   Coalition Membership and Organizational Plans
8.   Other Issues
9.   Adjourn


‘Reinventing Environmentalism’ Campaign to Kick Off in St. Paul on April 9th

News Release ‘Reinventing Environmentalism’ Campaign to Kick Off in St. Paul on April 9th

 Contact:  Don Parmeter, Founder
              American Environmental Institute
              (651) 493-3532     (612) 558-2859 (cell)    

St. Paul, MN…..A campaign to give local people a stronger voice in energy and environmental policy at the state capitol and in Washington, D.C., will kick off in St. Paul on Saturday, April 9th.  According to organizer Don Parmeter, the modern environmental movement is no longer a grassroots movement and it’s no longer about the environment.  “It’s about money, power and control.” he said.  “It’s fundamentally about governance.  The question is whether we want government from the top-down or from the bottom up.”

Parmeter started the American Environmental Institute to help encourage a change in the direction of the movement in order to restore and preserve land and water rights, scientific integrity, and the constitutional principles of limited federal powers.  Parmeter, a native of northern Minnesota, is a former pollution control engineer.  A West Point graduate, he received a fellowship from the Environmental Protection Agency for an interdisciplinary graduate program in energy and environmental studies at George Washington University in Washington, D.C. 

An afternoon workshop will be held at the Minnesota History Center, followed by an evening dinner meeting at the nearby Kelly Inn.  Mark Glaess, manager of the Minnesota Rural Electric Association, and William Glahn, Gov. Pawlenty’s outdoing director of Energy Security will be the keynote speakers for the evening event.  (See below and attached for details)

“We need a new environmental movement with new goals and new organizations.”  Author Michael Crichton

“If they beat us in Minnesota, they can beat us anywhere.”  Karl Gawell, Environmental lobbyist

In a very profound way, modern environmentalism affects every aspect of American life.  Regardless of your political views on the subject, it is important to consider alternative ways of protecting the environment without unnecessarily sacrificing jobs, the economy, freedom, and the social well-being of communities and regions. 

Below is an agenda for an afternoon workshop and evening event entitled Reinventing Environmentalism, scheduled for Saturday, April 9th.  The workshop will be held at the MN History Center, and the evening event will be held at the Kelly Inn.  Both are located in the capitol complex in St. Paul.   

To help cover expenses, there is a fee of $10. for the workshop, and $20. for the evening dinner event.  Organizations, businesses, and individual sponsorships are also encouraged.  For a donation of $50. or more, organizations and businesses will be recognized in the  event literature (unless you indicate otherwise).  Individuals will be recognized for a donation of $20. or more.  All sponsors will receive a periodic e-mail newsletter and action alerts for one year.  

An initial meeting on this subject was held in St. Paul on March 1st, and a broad cross-section of people were in attendance.  There was a great deal of interest and enthusiasm for moving forward, so we hope you will join this new movement by attending one or both of the April 9th events. 

Don Parmeter, Founder
American Environmental Institute
(651) 493-3532     (612) 558-2859 (cell)     
Reinventing Environmentalism
“Believing in People”

Saturday, April 9th
Capitol Complex
St. Paul, Minnesota
Principal Sponsor: American Environmental Institute

The Mission of AEI is “to define actions needed to change the course of the modern environmental movement in order to restore and preserve land and water rights, scientific integrity, and the constitutional principles of limited federal powers.”
Education Center (2nd Floor), MN History Center
345 W. Kellogg Blvd
12:30 p.m.          Introductions
                          Review and Discussion of Modern Environmental Movement

 1:00 p.m.           Environmentalism and the Economy: Agriculture, Energy, Forestry, Mining, Outdoor Recreation, Small Business
 2:00 p.m.           Some Current Issues:  EPA’s Expanding Authority; MN Clean Water Legacy Act; Natural Resource Funding;
                          Energy Policy; Agenda 21; Heart of the Continent Partnership; Landowner’s Revolt in SE MN; the International Joint
                          Commission and the Rainy/Lake of the Woods Watershed; Mississippi River Corridor/Watershed; DOI’s Wildlands 
                          Project; President’s Great American Outdoors Initiative; Other issues

 3:00 p.m.           -Break-

 3:15 p.m.           Hope, Not Fear:  15 suggested principles for guiding a new grassroots movement

 3:45 p.m.           Making it Work:  Short and Long-term Action Items

 4:30 p.m.           Pro-North Campaign:  Creating a model for grassroots governance

 5:00 p.m.           Adjourn
Reception and Dinner
Kelly Inn
161 St. Anthony Avenue
 5:30 p.m.           Reception
 6:30 p.m.           Dinner

 7:00 p.m.           Toward Responsible Energy Options for the Future:

                               “What do we get for our Money?”  Mark Glaess, Manager, MN Rural Electric Association

                               “Where do we go from here?”  William Glahn, Outgoing Director of Energy Security, MN Dep’t of Commerce

 8:00 p.m.           General Discussion of Land and Water Policy

 8:30 p.m.           Summary of recommendations from afternoon workshop

 9:00 p.m.           Adjourn  


Registration:  Workshop – $10.; Reception and Dinner – $20.
Sponsorship:  Organizations and Businesses: $50.+; Individuals: $20.+                       

                        Please make checks out to: American Environmental Institute, and mail to: 161 St. Anthony Ave., Ste. 935,
                        St. Paul, MN  55103. (Only one check necessary if you’re planning to attend both events), or you can pay at the door.

*RSVP* by Wednesday, April 6, to donparmeter@msn.com or by calling (651) 493 – 3532.

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