From our readersIssue Date: January 24, 2018
When the first post office was established in what was then the town of Maple Valley in 1879, mail was carried by stagecoach from Oconto. George H. Hall, postmaster of that city, was asked to give the newly made station a name. In honor of his sweetheart Lena McCarthy, he sent in the name "Lena". It was accepted by the Post Office officials and so the Village of Lena got its name.
Sent by a local reader
Letter to Editor:
Re: The Back 40 Mine " 1% Chance of a Failure that is 100 % Fatal
Aquila Resources, the Canadian mining company looking to operate a toxic waste facility, also known as a sulfide mine, 50 yards from the Menominee River, is telling us not to worry because they will be using modern mining techniques to prevent contamination of surface water, i.e., the Menominee River that we use for recreation and commerce, and ground water, i.e., the stuff we use for drinking, washing clothes, showers, etc. The MDEQ, headquartered in Lansing, is insuring that Aquila Resources keeps the toxic byproducts out of the water by requiring them to meet certain flood requirements when operating the mine. One of the factors used in flood management prediction and the design of flood abatement structures is the "X year flood" statistic. Sometimes an agency uses a 100 year flood event or even a 500 year flood event when designing flood abatement structures. The simple explanation of this term is that a 100 year flood is a flood of such severity that statistically it is supposed to happen only one time in 100 years. That doesn't mean that a major flood that inundates the site of the Back 40 mine won't happen, or won't happen in the lifetime of the mine. We could get a 100 year flood next year, and the year after that. Or we could get two 100 year floods in the same year. Imagine a flood as severe as the one that hit the Mississippi River and its tributaries in 1993 occurring in our area. But Aquila and the MDEQ are betting that this won't happen, at least not until Aquila extracts as much profit as they can and not until the leaders of the MDEQ are retired and living comfortably far away from the site of the mine. The question for you is, how much are you willing to bet? Are you willing to bet the future of the river on a couple of hundred low paying jobs? Are you willing to bet that a flood won't overflow the banks of the river and enter the mine pit? Are you willing to bet that your surface water won't be contaminated by mine tailings? Are you willing to bet that the ground water will be safe to use for generations, as it should be? If you lose that bet, rest assured that the owners and investors in the mine won't have to worry about contaminated water. But you will. Tell the MDEQ to follow their motto " Protecting Michigan's Environment " Ensuring Michigan's Future. This is important!
An "opinion entitled "Civility and respect must prevail' was recently published in a local paper very critical of Tina Lesperance a very concerned citizen who has every right, and in fact an obligation, to show her concern to the public her belief, and the belief of many others that a mining and processing operation on the banks of the Menominee River, can and will impair their right to enjoy safe, clean "pollution free' drinking water, and may potentially cause other serious disasters to our environment.
We all need to be aware of the criminal acts of the eight (8) State of Michigan Department of Environmental Quality and other local officials in Flint, Michigan that were indicted for altering, falsifying reports and for lying, cheating and covering up water pollution problems they created in Flint's water supply. The cost of this problem has already exceeded 500 million dollars and is not corrected yet! This is the same, Michigan State Department of Environmental Quality, that has already approved three (3) of the four (4) permits submitted by Aquila; the last or 4th is in the process of being approved, and according to Barry Hildreth, Aquila's CEO from Toronto, Canada, he expected approval, before the end of 2017.
Maybe Nancy Douglas, Menominee Business Development Director, who took it upon herself to file a Personal Protection Complaint against Tina Lesperance, in a "failed' attempt to intimidate her for publicly being criticized for promoting Aquila Resources mining interests in Menominee County and the City of Menominee, should take a look at her job description with the President of the Menominee Business Development Corporation and give back the hundreds of thousands of dollars (est. $446.622 based on tax returns filed by the MBDC) that were paid for professional fees and other expenses over the years with money that passed thru the Menominee Business Development Corporation to Douglas Consulting LLC.
Taxpayers of Menominee County and the City of Menominee are entitled to a review of Michigan State annual reports and tax returns filed by the Menominee Business Development Corporation as a 501C(3), not for profit corporation, and Douglas Consulting LLC. Area businesses benefiting from tax deductible donations, including Aquila Resources, Inc. and the taxpayers of Menominee should be entitled to this information since the County and City of Menominee paid $20,000 each annually to the Menominee Business Development Corporation that passed thru Douglas Consulting LLC to Nancy Douglas which supported her very obvious "conflict of interest' activities helping Aquila Resources, Inc. promote their mining activity in Menominee County.
William G. Boerner
Letter to Editor:
We are encouraging everyone to go to the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality's (MDEQ) Public hearing On Jan 23, from 6 to 10 p.m. at the Stephenson High School. This is your chance to make your voices heard to stop Sulfide Mining in its tracks. Not all of us has the luxury to be able to drop everything to go to the meeting. If this is the case for you, you may send your comments to http://bit.ly/Wetland-comments, or write to MDEQ Back Forty Mine Project, Office of Oil Gas and Minerals, 1504 W. Washington St., Marquette, MI, 49858. Comments are accepted until Feb. 2, 2018.
Make your voices heard and let them know that we need to take the Menominee River off of the 10 endangered river's list of our nation. The MDEQ has never allowed such a massive project take place in Michigan. Tell them that a sulfide mine leaches sulfuric acid which threatens the freshwater lakes, streams, wet lands and ground water. And the Flambeau Mine that Aquilla uses as an example? The test has shown that the sulfide levels were up 480 times the original levels before the mine started. This study was done by Laura Gauger of Duluth Minnesota. It is not possible to mine minerals without leaking sulfide, because they are bonded to sulfur. There has never ever been a sulfide mine that did not pollute so take a stand for our beautiful Menominee River and tell them No Back Forty Project. These wetland permits were not just granted, they are loaded with criteria that they need to meet. All of your efforts matter, write, attend meetings, speak on the river's behalf, and be the voice of your clean water.
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