September 05, 2013
Minnesota is home to one of the largest undeveloped mineral depos...
Frank Ongaro put it simply in an editorial in today’s Duluth News Tribune, writing “Our fathers’ and grandfathers’ mistakes made us smarter in so many ways, including about mining.”
Ongaro specifically addressed the PolyMet mine to be opened on the Iron Range in Minnesota.
“Modern mines use advanced engineering and invest heavily in monitoring and protections systems that didn’t exist when older mines began,” explained Ongaro. “Mining companies today spend years developing plans to ensure they are technically, operationally and financially prepared to meet every standard and regulation.”
“The days of dig first and fix the damage (and pay) later have been replaced with years of exhaustive environmental reviews, stringent regulations, and the ability to predict with great confidence how mining and processing facilities will affect the natural environment during mining and long after it ceases,” he said.
The mining industry is committed to the regulations that are intended to keep the environment and the surrounding communities safe, while also providing well-paying jobs to communities who need them.
In Minnesota alone, the industry contributes $3.2 billion to GDP and currently supports 52,631 direct and indirect jobs. The PolyMet project would create 360 jobs and generate $515 million in annual economic benefit to St. Louis County.