Environment/Energy

Hundreds pack hearing on mining bill

A bill to weaken environmental protections to in order to rush through a mining project in northern Wisconsin drew a standing-room-only crowd in West Allis this week, with commenters registering more than 2-1 against the legislation. Mike Wiggins, Jr., chairman of the Bad River Band of Lake Superior warned that the proposed mine in Wisconsin's Penokee hills "would destroy the Bad River watershed and the band's way of life." Wiggins added: "Unfortunately, this proposed legislation is a cruel hoax. No one should be fooled by the claim that it is about jobs. If anything, iron or taconite mining in the Bad River watershed near Lake Superior will probably destroy more existing local jobs in the tourism, forestry, fishing, and natural resource sectors than it would ever create." Read more...

Two hearings on mining Weds Dec 14

Concerned about the push to expand mining in Wisconsin?  The state legislature is holding two hearings on Wednesday, Decemer 14.

In Milwaukee, there's a hearing on the Assembly mining bill (LRB 3520/1) that was just unveiled last week.  Assembly leaders say this will be the only public hearing on the bill.  The hearing is at the State Fair Park, Tommy Thompson Youth Center (gate 5), 84th Street in West Allis, starting at 10 am.  To learn more about the bill, see the analyses from the Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters, Clean Wisconsin (PDF), Sierra Club (PDF) and River Alliance of Wisconsin (PDF).

In Madison, there's a hearing on the "polluters over people" bill (Senate Bill 326 / Assembly Bill 421, formerly Special Session Bill 24), which would greatly relax waterway protections and threaten water quality and quantity.  This hearing of the Joint Committee on Natural Resources and the Environment is in the state Capitol, room 300 Southeast, starting at 10 am.

Gold, Copper, and Zinc Prospecting

Canadian mining corporation Aquila Resources Inc. has been working with its partner HudBay Minerals to develop a sulfide mine called the Back Forty Project in Menominee County, MI along the Menominee River, which borders Wisconsin. The project is described by the company as at an advanced stage of exploration and is close to becoming a formal application to mine. (Map from Save the Wild UP)

 

Mining in Wisconsin

WNPJ Mining Pages:

Click the image below for a larger map 

Penokee Mine

Climate activists declare victory as Obama sends pipeline back for review

Just days after a ten-thousand-strong protest that completely surrounded the White House, President Obama announced that a controversial pipeline project previously approved by the State Department would be sent back for a second  review. 

The pipeline project would have transported Canadian tar sands oil to refineries in Texas, crossing environmentally sensitive areas and potentially threatening the Oglalla aquifer. The Canadian tar sands represent the largest unexploited pool of carbon remaining, causing climate scientist James Hansen to describe the Keystone XL project as the equivalent of "lighting a fuse to the biggest carbon bomb on the planet." More than 1300 people were arrested at a civil disobedience action against the pipeline in August, an action that many Wisconsinites participated in. Read more...

WNPJ Environment Page

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To join WNPJ's Environmental Working Group, e-mail carl@wnpj.org.

 

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