Opinion: Chris Dahlberg
St. Louis County benefits significantly from the Iron Range’s mining industry. Thousands of manufacturing and service jobs exist based on the Range’s 100+ year taconite (ferrous mineral) mining industry. These jobs are good-paying jobs through which men and women have provided for their families. Mining matters to them. I’d like to explain how mining matters to you, wherever you live in Minnesota.
Today, precious metal (non-ferrous) mining has the potential to greatly expand on the Iron Range. Precious metal projects currently planned have the potential to contribute $2.29 billion annually and 5,600 jobs to the state’s economy. Additionally, construction associated with these projects significantly raises this economic impact. The first anticipated precious metal project, Polymet, is anticipated to created 360 permanent mining jobs and 600+ spin-off jobs. Initial capital construction for the project, $475 million, would create the equivalent construction labor force required to build the Twins Stadium.