The health of the watershed is inextricably linked to the impact of climate change and a stable climate is dependent on smart clean energy choices. Making the connection between climate and a healthy watershed is the job of CURE’s Climate and Energy Desk. Growing crops for fuel impacts water quality. Increased rain and storm events due to climate change impact river flow and increase flood risks. Changes in seasonal weather challenge the survival of native plant and animal populations. Some climate solutions rest in policies that make clean energy the preferred choice for consumers and other solutions rest in policies that mitigate the harmful effects of climate change.
First and foremost, CURE dedicates resources to assure the health and sustainability of the Minnesota River Watershed. Staff and members work together to wisely develop strategies that engage partners and decision makers to take action to protect and restore water quality, biological integrity, and natural beauty. This effort starts in our own back yard and sometime finds CURE working to craft and pass both state and federal land and water policy.
Education & Leadership
Grassroots citizen action, community organizing and movement building are at the heart of CURE’s mission to create a healthy watershed. Innovative strategies to educate constituents, engage both supporters and detractors, and provide support and training for emerging leaders will firmly and broadly advance the movement needed to advance watershed thinking and values. This CURE initiative focuses on both beginning and advanced community organizing training, deep constituent education, and the new thinking needed to grow the next generation of community and state leaders that we will need to advance sustainability values, practices, and policies for watershed and environmental protection.
The best way to introduce people to the splendor of the watershed is to have them experience it for themselves. CURE is ramping up efforts to engage more people, more often to enjoy outdoor activities and participate in education and cultural events throughout the year. CURE member volunteers will lead this ambitious effort to grow the CURE community and make CURE the place to go for events and adventure in western Minnesota. This is what we mean when CURE talks about “sense of place”.
The sharpest tool in CURE’s toolbox is our ability to convene and communicate on difficult and sensitive issues. We can’t effectively tell the complicated story of climate and watershed health without having the skill and resources required to make the message both critical and understandable to the public. The communication and engagement desk at CURE is the apparatus that keeps the buzz focused on CURE’s mission.