As demand for strategic metals like copper, nickel, platinum, palladium and gold continues to grow domestically and globally, the Twin Metals Project has the potential to bring great economic opportunity to Minnesota through minerals present in our own backyard.
In 1977, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources estimated that the Duluth Complex contained 4.4 billion tons of ore containing copper, nickel and PGM resources. Information from Twin Metals, PolyMet Mining and other companies exploring in the area suggests that mineral resources in the Duluth Complex are much greater.
From the highly skilled and hard-working workforce to the presence of numerous natural resources, Minnesota has many assets that have built and sustained the state’s economy over time. Included among Minnesota’s assets is the iron mining industry that has played a vital role in the state’s economy for more than 130 years.
Mining has always been a way of life for Minnesotans seeking good-paying opportunities for themselves and their families. Between 1904 and 1984 Minnesota produced more than 106 million tons of iron ore, peaking in the 1940s as production surged to meet the country’s need for steel during World War II. Prosperity followed, as mining companies, businesses and civic leaders began to improve communities with schools, health facilities, recreational programs and more.
In 1979, the Minnesota mining industry reached a pinnacle with nearly 16,000 miners working in the Iron Range. Today, the number of miners and residents in the Iron Range has significantly declined.
Thankfully, a new era of mining brings the promise of significant long-term jobs and environmentally responsible economic development that will revitalize the region. The TMM Project alone will support approximately 650 direct mining jobs and an additional 1,300 spinoff jobs.
Minnesota has long sought and established a balance between environmental stewardship and economic development. As a world leader in developing strict regulatory processes for the development of natural resources, residents can be confident that the Twin Metals Project will protect the environment and rejuvenate the economy in northeastern Minnesota.