A study released this week by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency shows high levels of nitrates in surface waters throughout Minnesota.
The elevated nitrate level can negatively affect Minnesota's aquatic life and drinking water wells, and contribute to the "dead zone" in the Gulf of Mexico via the Mississippi River.
Levels were most elevated in southern Minnesota waters. More than 70 percent of the nitrate is coming from cropland, the MPCA reported.
"The state has no standards to protect aquatic life from the harmful effects of too much nitrogen, but 27 percent of Minnesota's rivers have nitrate levels that exceed federal and state drinking water standards," wrote MPR News reporter Stephanie Hemphill.
Dave Wall, lead author of the study, joins The Daily Circuit to talk about the significance of these findings.