space
space
Peshtigo Times
space
space
space
Perspectives
* Country Cousin
space
space
Sports Shorts
* Online Tools Show Banned Baiting and Feeding Areas
* Hunters Encouraged To Have Deer Tested For CWD
* Hunters Buying Licenses Can Make Donation To Boost Habitat Work
* Coleman Falls to Tough Iola-Scandinavia
* Oconto/Wausukee Meet ends at Sectional Semis

space
Peshtigo Fire
space
e-Edition
Now Available
For more information
click here
dot
THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
space
dot
space

Back 40 Mine Arguments In Federal Court Aug. 1

Issue Date: August 2, 2018

Judge William C. Griesbach in U.S. Eastern District Court in Green Bay will hear arguments for and against issuance of permits for the controversial Back Forty Mine at 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 1. The hearing is one of the steps in settling a lawsuit brought by the Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin against the Federal Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

At issue is Aquila Resources,Inc. proposal to build a large, open-pit mine and minerals-processing facility near the banks of the Menominee River in Stephenson Township, Mich., on land that tribal spokesmen say should be protected. The site reportedly is an area of historic significance to the Menominee Tribe, and among other things, once contained raised garden beds built by the Menominee Tribe when it was their homeland.

Opponents of the mine say the sulfide mine operation will adversely affect wetlands next to the Menominee River, as well as the river itself, and also will adversely affect numerous sites of cultural and historic significance to the Tribe.

The mine site is about 15 miles upstream from the cities of Marinette and Menominee and the mouth of the river into Green Bay.

 Represented by Earthjustice and tribal attorneys, the Tribe filed suit in January of 2018, charging that the federal agencies have abandoned their obligation under the Clean Water Act to exercise jurisdiction over wetland permits for the mine.

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has issued the needed permits and plans to construct the mine are in progress.

The Tribe asserts that by allowing the State of Michigan to oversee what should have been a federal permitting process, the federal agencies are violating requirements of the Clean Water Act.

Both federal agencies and Aquila Resources, Inc. have asked that the Tribe's lawsuit be dismissed. In the proceedings on Wednesday afternoon Judge Griesbach will hear oral arguments on the dismissal requests.

Those representing the Menominee Tribe's interests include Earthjustice Attorney Janette Brimmer; Attorney Lindzey Spice, for the Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin, and Melissa Cook, intergovernmental affairs manager for the Menominee Tribe of Wisconsin. 

 Menominee Tribal Chairman Doug Cox and other members of the Tribal Legislature are expected to attend Wednesday afternoon's proceedings  in U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin, Jefferson Court Building, Room 102, at 125 S. Jefferson Street in Green Bay.

There has been strong local opposition to the mine, particularly from the Wisconsin side of the Menominee River, which is also the border between Michigan and Wisconsin.

On June 4, Michigan DEQ announced that it had issued a wetlands permit for the mine, which was the fourth and final permit required from the DEQ before Aquila could begin the project.  The DEQ had previously issued mining, air, and surface water discharge permits.

The news release issued by MDEQ in June states that "based on the advice and guidance from the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), it has issued a wetlands permit for the Aquila Resources Back Forty (Aquila) mining project in the Upper Peninsula."

It went on to say that under the terms of the permit, the DEQ had required Aquila to develop an enhanced groundwater modeling and monitoring plan consistent with industry best-practices for the proposed open-pit mine before permitted mining operations could begin. The site-specific plan must include a wetland water budget model; collection of existing baseline groundwater and wetland data; and annual monitoring data to guard nearby wetlands against potential adverse impacts. The wetland plan must also be adaptive, with additional protective measures required if adverse water or wetland impacts are detected during the life of the project.

Aquila was being required to develop state-of-the-art controls aimed at spill prevention and response to potential pollution releases from the mining operations including, chemicals used and stored on site, and the storage and disposal of waste rock, and develop a closure plan for the mine which includes a plan for returning the waste rock to the pit in a way that eliminates future impacts to surface and ground water.

In May the EPA and Aquila had resolved several objections the EPA had raised about the project, an created an EPA-supported framework which the DEQ followed in drafting the permit.

"Issuance of the permit complies with the statutory required permitting deadline, while allowing Aquila to continue to collect the data necessary to develop improved site-specific models and plans that must be approved by DEQ prior to beginning mining operations," the DEQ news release concluded.

In its own news release issued from company headquarters in Toronto, Canada in June, Aquila announced that it received its wetlands, lakes, and streams permit from the Michigan DEQ for its zinc-and gold-rich Back Forty Project in Michigan. The news release noted the Wetlands Permit was issued inclusive of specific conditions, including those requested by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (the EPA). There reportedly were 51 pages of conditions listed by the EPA.

"With the issuance by the MDEQ of the Wetlands Permit and the objections of the EPA resolved, Aquila has now received all State and Federal permissions required for the construction and commencement of operations at the Back Forty Project. The Company has already received the three other required State permits which include the Nonferrous Metallic Mineral Mining, the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Permit, and the Air Use Permit to Install," the news release stated.

"This is a very significant milestone for Aquila and substantially completes a robust environmental permitting process in Michigan," said Barry Hildred, President and Chief Executive Officer of Aquila. "We can now focus the Company's resources on the pre-construction phase at Back Forty while considering funding alternatives to complete the development of the mine. I want to thank our entire expanded team for all of their efforts in helping us achieve this significant milestone, and we look forward to building a world-class project in Michigan."

The news release continues,"Aquila will continue its efforts with the State of Michigan and local communities to demonstrate our commitment to environmental responsibility and sustainable resource development that benefits all stakeholders. The Back Forty Mine will be a safe, disciplined operation that promotes and supports local community socio-economic development and is protective of the environment.

"With the receipt of the Wetlands Permit, Aquila will commence certain pre-construction activities immediately. The Back Forty open pit Feasibility Study is nearing completion, and the Company anticipates publishing the study in the coming months," the news release stated.

It said Aquila's" flagship Back Forty Project" is an open pit volcanogenic massive sulfide deposit with underground potential located along the mineral"rich Penokean Volcanic Belt in Michigan's Upper Peninsula which contains approximately 1.1 billion pounds of zinc and 1 million ounces of gold and repeated that Aquila had received all State and Federal permissions required for the construction and commencement of operations at the Back Forty Project.

Aquila sources have previously said the proposed Back Forty mine is expected to produce 721 million pounds of zinc, 74 million pounds of copper, 21 million pounds of lead, 4.6 million ounces of silver and 532,000 ounces of gold.

The company and supporters say the mine would provide jobs and an overall economic boost to an area that has depended on mining jobs for generations.

Opponents, who have pledged to continue their opposition, say the open pit sulfide mine will ruin the values of properties in its immediate vicinity on both the Wisconsin and Michigan sides of the river, disrupt tourism, and threaten water quality down river and possibly into Green Bay and Lake Michigan should a breach occur.

Marinette and Oconto County boards, along with numerous other area county and municipal boards and city councils in Wisconsin have adopted resolutions opposing the mine.


Recent stories, opinions and photos

Issue Date Department Headline
11-08-2018Obituaries
Richard W. Alfredson, Sr.

11-08-2018Obituaries
Steven R. Butterfield

11-08-2018Obituaries
Fay E. Carlsen

11-08-2018Obituaries
Kathleen A. Kilpela

11-08-2018Obituaries
Gertrude L. Pillath

11-08-2018Obituaries
Evert J. Ramstrum

11-08-2018Obituaries
Marvel A.Elbe

11-08-2018Obituaries
Carol A. Schlesner

11-08-2018Obituaries
Viola E. Anderson

11-08-2018Obituaries
Bernard C. Barker

11-08-2018Obituaries
Florence L. Brofka

11-08-2018Obituaries
Gregory Carlson

11-08-2018Obituaries
Lorraine A. Kahle

11-08-2018Obituaries
Jerry L. Kell

11-08-2018Obituaries
John S. Kowalczyk Jr.

11-08-2018Obituaries
Louis F. McClain

11-08-2018Obituaries
Ruby D. Nelson

11-08-2018Obituaries
Richard B. Peterson

11-08-2018Obituaries
Jeanette C. Robison

11-08-2018Obituaries
Margaret Shaffer

11-08-2018Obituaries
Germaine D. Simonson

11-08-2018Obituaries
Lorrayne Surprise

11-08-2018Obituaries
Richard J. Tickler

11-08-2018Obituaries
Phebe White

11-08-2018Obituaries
Waleria Wojcik

11-08-2018Sports
Online Tools Show Banned Baiting and Feeding Areas

11-08-2018Sports
Hunters Encouraged To Have Deer Tested For CWD

11-08-2018
Thunder Roll to Win in 2018-19 Season Opener

11-08-2018Sports
Hunters Buying Licenses Can Make Donation To Boost Habitat Work

11-08-2018Perspectives
Country Cousin

11-08-2018Perspectives
From our readers

11-08-2018Perspectives
From My Window

11-08-2018Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Church Pie/Bake Sale Nov. 21

11-08-2018Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Red Hats Nov. 8

11-08-2018Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Blood Drive is Nov. 27th

11-08-2018Community - Wausaukee
Holiday Harmony at Marinette Center Dec. 8

11-08-2018Community - Crivitz
Town of Lake Gets Loan

11-08-2018Community - Crivitz
Blood Drive at Crivitz Nov. 9th

11-08-2018Community - Crivitz
Crivitz Man Wins $150,000 in Lottery

11-08-2018Community - Crivitz
Seth Alfaro to Speak in Crivitz

11-08-2018Community - Coleman
Coleman Utility Board To Meet Tues., Nov 13

11-08-2018Community - Coleman
Coleman To Finalize Some Referendum Project Plans

11-08-2018Community - Coleman
Pound Christmas Parade Dec. 8th

11-08-2018Community - Coleman
Golden Agers List Card Club Winners

11-08-2018Front Page
Officers Honored

11-08-2018Front Page
Incumbents Returned To Posts In Marinette County

11-08-2018Front Page
Budgets Top Agenda For Peshtigo Council Nov. 7

11-08-2018Front Page
Riverside Cemetery Board To Consider Rules Change

11-08-2018Front Page
Holiday Tour of Homes Set for Nov. 30, Dec. 1

11-01-2018Front Page
PHS To Honor Area Veterans Nov. 9th

11-01-2018Front Page
Marinette County Taxes Are Down Slightly Again

11-01-2018Front Page
Oconto To Consider Requests For ATV/Snowmobile Routes

11-01-2018Front Page
City, School Officials Share Ideas For Traffic Safety At High School

11-01-2018Front Page
Town of Peshtigo Fire Commission Hears 2019 Equipment Requests

11-01-2018Sports
Coleman Falls to Tough Iola-Scandinavia

11-01-2018Sports
Oconto/Wausukee Meet ends at Sectional Semis

11-01-2018Sports
Woller, Hansen Lead Area Runners at State

11-01-2018Sports
Six Teams & Individuals Win State Cross Country Championships

11-01-2018Community - Coleman
Beaver Church Booyah Lunch, Raffle Nov. 4th

11-01-2018Community - Coleman
Coleman Lioness Big 1 in 10 Raffle Nov. 10

11-01-2018Community - Coleman
Craft Show at Coleman Nov. 17

11-01-2018Community - Coleman
Coleman School Pre-K Screening

11-01-2018Community - Crivitz
$150,000 Lottery Ticket in Crivitz

11-01-2018Community - Crivitz
Fall Harvest Unity Dinner is Nov. 4th

11-01-2018Community - Crivitz
ALA Marinette County Collect Member Dues

11-01-2018Community - Crivitz
Thanksgiving Dinner at Northwood's Church

11-01-2018Community - Wausaukee
Legion Post 66 Vets Day Dinner Nov. 3rd

11-01-2018Community - Wausaukee
Hunters Supper at St. Augustine Nov. 17

11-01-2018Community - Wausaukee
Bake Sale Nov. 17 at Wausaukee Church

11-01-2018Community - Wausaukee
Blood Drive  November 26th Wausaukee School

11-01-2018Perspectives
From My Window

11-01-2018Perspectives
From Our Readers

11-01-2018Perspectives
Country Cousin

11-01-2018Obituaries
Janice Wankowski

11-01-2018Obituaries
Ann Hassman

11-01-2018Obituaries
Richard J. Anglehart

11-01-2018Obituaries
Allan E. Anglemyer

11-01-2018Obituaries
Clarence Dionne, Jr.

11-01-2018Obituaries
Marjorie C. Hanson

11-01-2018Obituaries
Michael U. Jonas

11-01-2018Obituaries
Barbara L. Macht

11-01-2018Obituaries
Clara L. Mathias

11-01-2018Obituaries
John F. Miller

11-01-2018Obituaries
Elizabeth A. Mullins

11-01-2018Obituaries
Eric R. Niemi

11-01-2018Obituaries
Olga L. Schneider

11-01-2018Obituaries
Jerold Wendt

11-01-2018Obituaries
Patricia M. Wiandt

11-01-2018Obituaries
David A. Zeitler

10-25-2018Obituaries
Connie B. Ball

10-25-2018Obituaries
Linda M. Barrette

10-25-2018Obituaries
Wallace J. Beaudry

10-25-2018Obituaries
Chris L. Champagne

10-25-2018Obituaries
Michael Cronick Sr.

10-25-2018Obituaries
Gerald F. Degrand

10-25-2018Obituaries
James Duer

10-25-2018Obituaries
Gary R. Effenberger

10-25-2018Obituaries
Dean Grant

10-25-2018Obituaries
Linda M. O'Leary

10-25-2018Obituaries
Kenneth W. Race

10-25-2018Obituaries
Robert L. Reeser, Jr.

10-25-2018Obituaries
Randy L. Shehow

10-25-2018Obituaries
Leatha A. Sokolowski

10-25-2018Obituaries
Evelyn S. VanHese

10-25-2018Obituaries
Sterling H. Zickuhr

10-25-2018Sports
Oct. 31 Deadline To Purchase Sturgeon Spearing Licenses

10-25-2018Sports
Area Runners Head To State Meet in Wisconsin Rapids

10-25-2018Sports
Rangers/Blue Devils Advance to"Sectional Semis

10-25-2018Sports
Tough Opening Round For Area Teams; Coleman is Sole Survivor

10-25-2018Perspectives
Country Cousin

10-25-2018Perspectives
From our readers

10-25-2018Perspectives
From My Window

10-25-2018Community - Wausaukee
Crivitz, Wausaukee Lions Give Awards

10-25-2018Community - Wausaukee
Christy Fisher Speaks to Wausaukee Students

10-25-2018Community - Wausaukee
Middle Inlet Recycling Center Opened Oct. 6

10-25-2018Community - Crivitz
American Legion Auxiliary Meet

10-25-2018Community - Crivitz
Woman's Club Gives Donation

10-25-2018Community - Crivitz
Seth Alfaro to Speak in Crivitz

10-25-2018Community - Crivitz
Fall Harvest Unity Dinner is Nov. 4th

10-25-2018Community - Coleman
Coleman Students Tour Washington D.C. Sites

10-25-2018Community - Coleman
Senior Club To Meet Nov. 5th

10-25-2018Community - Coleman
Heart and Pat Benatar Tribute at Equity Hall

10-25-2018Community - Coleman
Concealed Carry Class Nov. 13

10-25-2018Front Page
Free Burgers

10-25-2018Front Page
Proposed Marinete County Tax Levy Is Down Slightly

10-25-2018Front Page
Propose Peshtigo City Tax Equal To Last Year

10-25-2018Front Page
Town Of Peshtigo Hear Zoning Request

10-25-2018Front Page
Peshtigo School Budget Meeting Set For Oct. 29

10-18-2018Obituaries
Joseph Bikowski

10-18-2018Obituaries
Kurt Burge

10-18-2018Obituaries
Agnes Campbell

10-18-2018Obituaries
Byford A. Carter

10-18-2018Obituaries
Sandra Dubovenko

10-18-2018Obituaries
Lorraine M. Ehlert

10-18-2018Obituaries
Roger C. Eklund

10-18-2018Obituaries
Kathryn A. Firgens

10-18-2018Obituaries
Terry Flannery

10-18-2018Obituaries
Jamie Glish

10-18-2018Obituaries
Dean Grant

10-18-2018Obituaries
Mary P. Gribbons

10-18-2018Obituaries
Mildred R. Haulotte

10-18-2018Obituaries
Donald Hirsch

10-18-2018Obituaries
Harold K. Johnson

10-18-2018Obituaries
Wayne F. Louis

10-18-2018Obituaries
Daniel O. Lynch

10-18-2018Obituaries
Ida F. Maske

10-18-2018Obituaries
Linda E. Nicklaus

10-18-2018Obituaries
Matthew A. Neshek

10-18-2018Obituaries
Judith A. Piel  

10-18-2018Obituaries
Robert A. Portlock


space
Peshtigo Times
WEB Poll!
Should President Trump send the military to our southern borders to prevent illegals from coming in?
space Yes
No
Undecided
space
TO VOTE CLICK
YES, NO or UNDECIDED

Suggest a Question
space .
space
FRONT
space
.
space
CLASSIFIEDS
space
.
space
COMMUNITY
space
.
space
GUEST BOOK
space
.
space
NEWS
space
.
space
OBITS
space
.
space
PERSPECTIVES
space
.
space
SPORTS
space
.
space
SUBSCRIBE
space
.
space
.
space
PESHTIGO FIRE
space
.
space
CUSTOM PRINTING
space
.
space
TIMES' SAVER
space
.
space
Click for Peshtigo, Wisconsin Forecast
FORECAST
space
Quick...
News or Ad Search
Enter News key words.
Enter Ad key words.



Peshtigo Times
841 Maple St
PO Box 187
Peshtigo, WI 54157
Phone: 715-582-4541
Email:
News@
PeshtigoTimes.com

space
Fax: 715-582-4662
© 2000-2018
All right reserved
space
Powered by
WEB Media
Interactive
COMMUNITY
WEB sites