PolyMet Mining reached a major milestone today in its copper-nickel mining project with the release of the supplemental draft Environmental Impact Statement (SDEIS).
The Minnesota DNR, one of the co-lead agencies working on the project, succinctly summarized what exactly the SDEIS is in a recent press release: “The SDEIS will provide the public with the most up-to-date information and environmental analysis of the proposal. The SDEIS is not a permit to mine, but rather a thorough description of the project and an analysis of any environmental impacts it is expected to have.”
The complete SDEIS, a 50-page executive summary and several fact sheets are posted at the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) website.
Public comment period
The 90-day public comment period for the SDEIS runs from December 14, 2013, to March 13, 2014. This is the community’s chance to review the SDEIS and share their opinions, questions and concerns and copper mining in Minnesota.
The Minnesota DNR is the agency accepting comments. There are three ways to submit a comment:
- Email a comment. Be sure to include your full name and mailing address
- Mail a written comment to:
Lisa Fay, EIS Project Manager
MDNR Division of Ecological and Water Resources
Environmental Review Unit
500 Lafayette Road, Box 25
St. Paul, MN 55155
- Comment in person at a public hearing (See locations and dates below)
While commenting is not a “vote” on whether the PolyMet project should move forward, meaningful, substantial comments can impact the agencies’ final decision to issue PolyMet Mining permits for copper mining in Minnesota. Make sure your comments are clear, concise, specific, informed and relevant.
As part of the public comment period, the Minnesota DNR and other co-lead agencies (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and U.S. Forest Service) will hold a public meeting in three locations:
Duluth – January 16, 2014
Aurora – January 22, 2014
Saint Paul – January 28, 2014
Get more details on meeting times and locations.
What happens next?
After the SDEIS public review/comment period, the agencies will review and respond to all comments, revise the document (if needed) and, publish a final EIS for public review. The agencies will use this document to make their Record of Decision (ROD) and Adequacy Decision (AD).
Once the ROD and AD have been made, the agencies will be able to issue permits, each of which will have had its own public process.
This is an important time for PolyMet Mining – and all of Minnesota. Sign up for updates to stay informed on PolyMet Mining news.