sulfide mining http://michiganradio.org en Nickel-copper mine project in the UP being sold for $325 million http://michiganradio.org/post/nickel-copper-mine-project-being-sold-325-million <p>The owner of the controversial Eagle mine project in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, Rio Tinto PLC, says it will sell the project to Canada's Lundin Mining Corp. for $325 million.</p><p>The deal will require approval from regulators.</p><p>Rio Tinto is still building the mine which they say is 55% complete. Construction started in 2010.</p> Thu, 13 Jun 2013 18:53:45 +0000 Mark Brush 13044 at http://michiganradio.org Nickel-copper mine project in the UP being sold for $325 million Tribe from Michigan's Upper Peninsula say mines violate rights http://michiganradio.org/post/tribe-michigans-upper-peninsula-say-mines-violate-rights <p>A Central Upper Peninsula Indian tribe is asking the United Nations to help curb sulfide mining in the Upper Great Lakes.</p><p>The Keweenaw Bay Indian Community (KBIC) recently sent the United Nations a document outlining how governments are locating and planning mines on Indian land without getting input from tribes.</p><p>Tribal officials say that infringes on their treaty rights.&nbsp;</p><p>KBIC member and document co-author Jessica Koski said the tribe needs to have a seat at the table.</p><p>&ldquo;This is our traditional territory.&nbsp; This is where we hunt, we fish, we gather, and those are rights that are maintained in treaties,&rdquo; said Koski.</p><p>Koski said the mines create the equivalent of battery acid, which drains into nearby watersheds.</p><p>&ldquo;That is a huge problem. There is no example in the entire world of a sulfide mine that hasn&rsquo;t polluted water resources. And this is an issue that would last for generations and centuries in the Great Lakes region,&rdquo; said Koski.</p><p>Mining company Kennecott Minerals said its design contains safety components that will keep Lake Superior from being polluted.</p><p>Supporters of the mine say the area badly needs the jobs.</p><p>But Koski said the mine currently being built in Marquette County is slated to last only five years, and the U.P. needs economic opportunities that are long-term.</p><p>&ldquo;And that could be tourism, recreation, agriculture&mdash;local sustainable economies where we can thrive into the future and not have this &lsquo;boom and bust,&rsquo; which is a very well-known phenomenon with the mining industry, which is why the U.P. is so desperate for another gasp of another mining boom,&rdquo; said Koski.</p><p>Koski also said a sacred site near the nickel and copper mine has been fenced off and degraded. Mining company Kennecott Minerals says the tribe still has access to Eagle Rock.</p><p>Koski said their U.N. document aims to educate the public about state and federal governments approving mines on Native land without consulting tribes.</p><p>It comes on the heels of the U.N.&rsquo;s Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People.</p><p>The U.S. approved the multi-nation &ldquo;Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People&rdquo; two years ago.&nbsp; But a U.N. human rights official who visited the U.S. last week said more needs to be done to heal historic wounds, including a return of Native American lands to tribes. Mon, 07 May 2012 15:55:47 +0000 Nicole Walton 7366 at http://michiganradio.org Tribe from Michigan's Upper Peninsula say mines violate rights Upper Peninsula nickel-copper mine moves ahead http://michiganradio.org/post/upper-peninsula-nickel-copper-mine-moves-ahead <p>For ten years, Kennecott Eagle Minerals Company has been pushing to mine nickel and copper near Marquette. The company started underground blasting of the mine in September.</p><p>The Department of Environmental Quality issued permits for the mine in 2007. But several of those permits have been challenged in court.</p><p>A circuit court judge in Ingham County recently upheld the mining permit.</p><p>Michelle Halley is an attorney for the National Wildlife Federation. It&rsquo;s one of the groups that challenged that permit. She says they&rsquo;re concerned about the type of mining that will happen in the Eagle Mine. It&rsquo;s sometimes called sulfide mining.</p><p>&ldquo;The rock at Eagle is extremely acid producing, very high in sulfides and so once that rock is exposed to air and water, there&rsquo;s really no debate it will begin producing acid.&rdquo;</p><p>That acid is sulfuric acid. According to the Environmental Protection Agency... that acid can cause heavy metals to leach from rocks. The resulting fluid can be highly toxic to people and wildlife.</p><p>This is called acid mine drainage. On its website, Kennecott Eagle Minerals Company says there is a risk that it can happen. But the company says it&rsquo;s taking a number of steps to reduce that risk.</p><p> Tue, 29 Nov 2011 15:17:08 +0000 Rebecca Williams 5165 at http://michiganradio.org Upper Peninsula nickel-copper mine moves ahead