What is the Envirothon?  One of the state’s largest environmental education competitions, the Envirothon is an outdoor learning event for high school students in grades 9-12.  Teams consisting of 5 students from the same school/organization visit 6 learning stations covering Aquatics, Forestry, Soils, Wildlife and Current Events covering a current environmental topic.  Students are given a test at 5 of the stations and given 15 minutes to complete as a group, the sixth station is for an oral presentation to a panel of judges, also based on the current environmental topic for the year.  The stations are staffed by natural resource professionals from across the state.  They use the outdoor setting, as well as their own props to add to the experience.  The top 3 teams advance to state to the Minnesota State Envirothon.

When did the program start?  The program started in Pennsylvania in 1979 under the name Environmental Olympics.  Minnesota held its first Envirothon in 1993, with about 100 students from the Twin Cities area.  By 1994, several SWCD’s organized regional competitions throughout the state.  In 1994, the first year Minnesota participated in the national competition, New Ulm Cathedral High School placed 7th in the nation.  By 1996, each region in Minnesota hosted competitions.  Currently, about 1,000 total students participate in the Envirothon competition throughout Minnesota.

What are the benefits of an Envirothon?  The Envirothon is more than a competition.  Together with teachers, schools and professionals, we help develop knowledgeable citizens who can make informed decisions that affect the quality of life in our communities.  Ultimately, we are creating new leaders who will provide the vision for our future and well-being.


The Area III Region Envirothon.  Carlton County is part of the Area III region and hosts the  Area III Envirothon at the Cloquet Forestry Center each spring.

Who Sponsors the Event?  The Area III Envirothon is sponsored by the Area III Soil and Water Conservation Districts (SWCD’s) and by local businesses.  Area III consists of the following County SWCD’s:  Aitkin, Carlton, Cook, Kanabec, Lake, Pine, Mille Lacs, North St. Louis, South St. Louis.

2017  Carlton County Business Sponsors

  • Cornerstone State Bank
  • Sappi

If you would like to help sponsor this event please contact your local SWCD or the Area III Envirothon coordinator,  Emily Nelson (218) 834-8576.