ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has issued permits for a planned copper-nickel mine in northeastern Minnesota.
The agency said Thursday it has issued permits to Poly Met Mining Inc. for the company’s proposed NorthMet mining project. But the project still requires permits from other agencies.
DNR Commissioner Tom Landwehr says “No project in the history of Minnesota has been more thoroughly evaluated.”
Environmentalists have opposed the mine for fear it could pollute pristine waters.
PolyMet says it can operate the proposed mine near Hoyt Lakes and Babbitt without harming the environment while creating hundreds of badly needed jobs on Minnesota’s Iron Range.
Paula Maccabee, an attorney for environmental group WaterLegacy, said environmentalists will likely appeal if permits are granted, or they could request the DNR to reconsider its decision.