The land exchange allows the company to receive approximately 6,650 acres of surface land above and around the NorthMet ore body. It currently is owned by the Forest Service. In return, PolyMet will transfer four parcels of land totaling 6,690 acres to the Forest Service.
St. Paul, Minnesota (Jan. 9, 2017) – Jobs for Minnesotans today released the following statement in response to the federal Final Record of Decision approving the land exchange for PolyMet Mining’s NorthMet project:
“Jobs for Minnesotans celebrates this important milestone for copper-nickel mining in Minnesota. The federal Final Record of Decision for PolyMet’s land exchange validates the project’s comprehensive environmental review process culminating in the Final Environmental Impact Statement. Furthermore, this decision acknowledges that this land exchange is in the best interest of the public.
The NorthMet project has been thoroughly examined by multiple state and federal agencies, and this decision takes us one step closer to bringing hundreds of jobs to an area of the state that desperately needs the economic opportunities that this project will provide. Following this momentous decision, we are confident that PolyMet will work efficiently with the agencies to complete the permitting process in a timely fashion.”
About Jobs for Minnesotans
Jobs for Minnesotans, a coalition representing business, labor and communities, supports statewide opportunities for prosperity and middle-class jobs from sustainable natural resource development in Minnesota. The organization is committed to the principle that our state can preserve both job opportunities and the environment for future generations. Jobs for Minnesotans was co-founded in 2012 by the Minnesota Building and Construction Trades Council representing 55,000 workers and the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce representing 2,300 companies and 500,000 employees. For more information, visit jobsforminnesotans.org, follow @JobsforMN on Twitter and find the coalition on Facebook.com/Jobs4MN.
Media Contact: Nancy Norr, Board Chair
Mesabi Daily News
In a Nov. 27 article in the Star Tribune (“Loved and loathed, she’s drawn line in BWCA”), anti-mining activist Becky Rom claimed that when she meets with members of Congress and officials at the Department of Agriculture, Bureau of Land Management, or Department of the Interior, she and her fellow advocates “always say, ‘Hi, we’re from Ely.’ ”
Well, Ms. Rom: Hi, I’m from Ely, too! Ely was founded as a mining town. The Lake Vermilion gold rush brought many pioneers to the area in 1865. Although hardly any gold was found, it was discovered that the area did contain large deposits of iron ore. Thousands of new immigrants came to America at this time. Soon they came to the Minnesota Iron Range looking for work. When the Duluth, Mesabi and Iron Range Railway extended its rails from Tower to Ely in 1888, Ely began mining operations with the opening of the Chandler Mine. Ore was shipped to docks on Lake Superior in Two Harbors and Duluth.
Duluth News Tribune
David Ross (President of the Duluth Area Chamber of Commerce)
In their defense, we believe they have noble intentions. They are kind, sensitive and caring individuals. Their campaign literature states that they “want to represent all Duluthians, no matter our age, race, gender, class, occupation and political affiliation.” Duluth City Councilors Em Westerlund and Gary Anderson are, and do, all of these things. Unfortunately, if unchallenged and unchecked, they may soon become one more thing — job killers.
A few months ago, they led the charge to have the Duluth City Council add a discretionary, imprudent roadblock to PolyMet Mining’s rightfully onerous and demanding mining application and approval process. Fortunately, more balanced members of the Duluth City Council voted down their misguided initiative.
Ely was founded as a mining town. The Lake Vermilion gold rush brought many pioneers to the area in 1865. Although hardly any gold was found, it was discovered that the area did contain large deposits of iron ore. Thousands of new immigrants came to America at this time. Soon they came to the Minnesota Iron Range looking for work.
Those opposed to mining have no interest in these historical facts. But it was the miners and their families who made Ely thrive, which allowed businesses to develop like Ace Hardware, barbershops, drug stores, Penney’s, Wards, Sears, etc. — and even Canoe Country Outfitters!