December 6 will be a big day for us here at PolyMet Mining – and for all of Northeastern Minnesota. That’s when state and federal agencies will publish the supplemental draft Environmental Impact Statement (SDEIS) for the PolyMet project.

The SDEIS release, originally scheduled for November 22, has been delayed two weeks due to the 19-day federal government shutdown in October, according to a news release from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.

Start of the public comment period

The publication of the SDEIS will begin the much-anticipated public comment period, which will likely last 90 days. This is the public’s chance to review the document and share their opinions, questions and concerns. The co-lead agencies (the Minnesota DNR, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and U.S. Forest Service) will hold three public meetings, likely to be held in late January. Exact times and locations will be announced once the SDEIS has been released.

A major milestone

The SDEIS is a detailed review of the project and an evaluation of possible environmental impacts. It considers mitigation and other alternatives that may lessen the environmental impacts. It’s not a permit to mine, but its release is a big step in our efforts to obtain permits to build and operate the mine. The company so far has invested more than $60 million conducting studies, monitoring and testing to provide data to the co-lead agencies developing the SDEIS.

Next steps

After the SDEIS public review/comment period, the agencies will review and respond to all comments, revise the SDEIS (if needed), and, ultimately, publish a final EIS for public review. The agencies will use this document to make their Record of Decision (ROD) and Adequacy Decision (AD).

After the ROD and AD, the agencies will be able to formally issue permits, each of which will have had its own public process.

 

This is an exciting time for PolyMet Mining – and all of Minnesota. Sign up for updates to stay informed on PolyMet Mining news, including the release of the SDEIS.