The presentation at the Rosenmeier Center forum at Central Lakes College in Brainerd on Wednesday night was informative and fairly well attended. One disturbing aspect, I think, was that fact that most of us there were over 50 years old. On a college campus and presenting such a controversial topic as copper mining, one would think there would be some free-thinking young people there, but no.
It seems a given that what is at risk is some substantial potential sulfuric pollution along with the extraction of copper.
This is to take place in a very sensitive part of Minnesota, basically an all rock complex with little top soil, near the BWCA. One fact that went unchallenged is the idea that a potential of 20 years worth of jobs could be created with 200 years of potential contamination!
It would be foreign-dominated companies pushing the agenda to mine the copper and over see control of pollutants. The dominant history of copper mining is not good, to date. But, we should feel good that we could create jobs in the face of a bad history.
A startling fact, late to the argument, is that the $24 million dollar EIS study by Polymet mining, under estimated the flowage of the Partridge river that drains the basin of the proposed mining site, by at least 60 percent! That seems to fly in the face of reasonable error, does it not? What other errors might be discovered on the way, in favor of the mining company.
If what we get is what we see, we ought to look very closely. This potential mining ought not to be allowed to happen at the risk of such a pristine environment. Yes we need the jobs, but we should go slowly and do our due diligence.