Twin Metals Minnesota Statement on Action by U.S. Department of the Interior to Seek Public Comment Regarding its Environmental Review on Federal Mineral Leases in Northeast Minnesota
ST. PAUL, Minn., [December 20, 2018] – Twin Metals Minnesota issued the following statement in response to today’s action by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to formally seek public comment on its environmental review for two federal mineral leases held by the company in Northeast Minnesota. Twin Metals’ federal leases are important components of the underground mine project proposal the company is preparing for submittal to state and federal agencies for extensive review through an Environmental Impact Statement:
“Twin Metals looks forward to the timely and proper completion of the lease renewal process. We continue to look forward to the opportunity to present a formal Mine Plan of Operations for review by the federal government.”
Twin Metals’ federal mineral leases were first issued by the federal government in 1966 with a right of unlimited, successive 10-year renewals. The leases were renewed by BLM and USFS in 1989 and again in 2004. Twin Metals filed for the third renewal of the leases in late 2012.
While the prior two renewals were granted under a categorical exclusion, the current public comment period allows for greater transparency and public input into BLM’s environmental review for the non-discretionary renewal of the leases. This opportunity to provide comment is in addition to the fulsome public comment process the USFS held in 2016, during which USFS requested public comment and held two public hearings regarding these leases.
Twin Metals has invested more than $400 million to date in acquisition, exploration, technical, environmental, and other project development activities. The Twin Metals project will meet all state and federal environmental standards, provide hundreds of jobs for generations of Minnesotans, and result in billions of dollars of environmentally responsible economic growth in the region.
About Twin Metals Minnesota: Twin Metals Minnesota is a Minnesota company focused on designing, constructing and operating an underground copper, nickel, platinum, palladium, gold and silver mining project (TMM Project) in the Iron Range region of Northeast Minnesota. The TMM Project brings the promise of significant long-term jobs and environmentally responsible economic development for generations in Minnesota. Twin Metals is owned by Antofagasta plc, one of the top ten copper producers in the world. For more information, visit https://www.twin-metals.com/ and https://www.facebook.com/TwinMetalsMN/.