Minnesota State Supreme Court Halts PolyMet’s Permit to Mine
The Minnesota State Supreme Court has hit the pause button on Polymet's permit to mine in Minnesota and the permit has been sent back to regulators for further review.
According to StarTribune.com, this is a setback for what would be Minnesota's first copper mine, "a $1 billion open-pit mine project now stalled with several permits stayed or under review."
While the news is a setback for mine developers, it is considered a big victory for environmental groups, one of which was quoted at Startribune.com:
"Today, the Supreme Court hit the reset button on PolyMet," the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy said in a statement. "Now it's up to Governor Walz and his agencies to make better decisions and protect Minnesotans and the water they depend on."
The Minnesota State Supreme Court ruled that the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources must now hold a "trial-like contested-case hearing on the "effectiveness" of the company's plan to line the tailings dam with bentonite clay."
Furthermore, the ruling stated that the Minnesota Department mistakenly issued a permit "without an appropriate fixed term." This would affix an exact date for when the site would be cleaned completely and returned to nature.
The permit to mine and dam safety permits were originally issued in 2018 to the Minnesota subsidiary of PolyMet Mining Corp.