The bipartisan provision, which will now go to the full Senate and House of Representatives for final approval, would help fight the spread of invasive carp by closing the Upper St. Anthony Falls Lock within one year
WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar along with U.S. Senator Al Franken and U.S. Representatives Keith Ellison, Erik Paulsen, Tim Walz and Rick Nolan announced today that their bipartisan provision to keep invasive carp out of Minnesota’s waterways has been included in the final water infrastructure conference bill. The provision, authored by Klobuchar in the Senate and Ellison in the House, would help fight the spread of invasive carp – also known as Asian carp – by closing the Upper St. Anthony Falls Lock within one year. It will now go to the full Senate and House of Representatives for final approval.
“The spread of invasive carp poses a major threat not only to Minnesota’s environment, but also the recreation and fishing industries that help power our state’s economy and create jobs,” Klobuchar said. “I fought hard to include this critical lock closure provision in the final bill so we can stop these invasive species in their tracks.”
“Invasive carp in Minnesota’s lakes and rivers would prove disastrous for our fishing, boating, and tourism industries, which support thousands of jobs and contribute so much to our state’s economy,” said Franken. “I'm very pleased that our bipartisan measure to control and prevent the spread of these carp in Minnesota is one step closer to becoming law.”
“I’m proud that a bipartisan and bicameral push to protect Minnesota’s waterways from invasive carp will soon be headed to the president’s desk,” Rep. Ellison said. “Closing the little-used St. Anthony Falls Lock is the best way for us to slow the spread of invasive carp in Minnesota and to protect the natural resources that are critical to Minnesota’s economy and our way of life.”
“Time is running out to stop Asian carp from jeopardizing Minnesota’s ecological and economic health,” Rep. Paulsen said. “The provision included in the WRDA conference report is important to help prevent the spread of invasive species in our lakes, streams, and rivers.”
"These invasive carp pose a serious threat to Minnesota's waterways and our multi-billion dollar tourism and sportsmen industry," Rep. Walz said. "We must do all we can to stop them in their tracks. I'm pleased this provision was included in the WRDA conference report but the fight doesn’t end here, it begins here. We must stay on the offensive if we are to eliminate not only the threat of invasive carp, but the hundreds of other invasive species that hazard our waters.”
“Closing the lock and dam at St. Anthony Falls is our best and last chance to prevent Asian carp from invading the Mississippi watershed and destroying its native habitat,” Nolan said. “I'm pleased that this bill also includes my companion amendment redefining "invasive species" to include animal life as well as plants, adding another weapon to our arsenal in the fight against Asian carp, zebra mussels, and hundreds of other invasive species that threaten our Great Lakes and Minnesota waters.”
The provision is supported by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Audubon Minnesota Waters, Minnesota Seasonal Recreational Property Owners, Anglers for Habitat, Clean Water Action, Minnesota Coalition of Lake Associations, National Wildlife Federation, Fish & Wildlife Legislative Alliance, Mississippi River Fund, Minnesota Division Izaak Walton League of America, Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy, Minnesota Trout Unlimited, National Parks Conservation Association, and Friends of the Mississippi River.