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Copper and nickel mining has a long history of being damaging to the environment. Prove your methods work to prevent contamination somewhere else first, then come back and talk. Don't ruin out environment.
Yes, Ely, Get that information out there--especially to your own local residents, so many of whom seem delusional about how ideal the mining jobs are going to be. Too many residents of the Ely area have no respect for the hospitality/tourism business that truly supports their economy. This out-dated old mining mindset keeps that town far more stuck in the past than its eastern BWCA counterpart, Grand Marais and the Gunflint Trail. Neither area has any economic future if the lakes are ruined, but more people in Ely seem to not get it, to be hell-bent on wrecking their own economy. Hospitality and tourism directly or indirectly keeps almost every business in Ely economically viable--why, oh why, would you gamble all your other economic stability for one risky business? Far more jobs could be lost in the long run with this version of the future, but too many lawmakers and power brokers are willing to make that gamble for a short-run tax boost.
Soon we will see the rambling comments of the religious right wing conservative republicans who think God gave them the planet to turn the whole place into an unlivable contaminated garbage dump. It's nothing but complete disregard for the safety of the water we drink, the air we breathe and the food we eat. They call it "letting business manage themselves", "letting the market decide" and "keeping businesses free from regulation so they can grow the economy". The rest of us call it "The Gulf oil spill", "Exxon Valdez oil spill", "Enron", "Texas fertilizer explosion",... How you define environmental disasters in the making largely depends on your political affiliation and level of denial of scientific facts. It's probably got something to do with campaign donations too. Or mostly to do with campaign donations I guess.
The citizens group is wasting its money. Corporations will always get their way. They have the big pockets to lobby and fill politicians' campaign coffers.
Ely was built because of the mines. These Chicago transplants who now live in Ely and own the businesses could care less about the life long residents of Ely.
While of course I believe its important to protect our natural resources and tourism industry, I also understand you can't have your cake and eat it too. For decades now, everyone in the Arrowhead has complained of schools closing, people leaving town, businesses shutting down etc etc. I bet the percentage of people I went to school with that are still there is probably around 10% or less. Here is a real opportunity to create another mining boom which will bring solid jobs, solid schools, and solid families. Is that not important either? I'm sorry, but granola eating canoe paddlers can only support so many businesses. Face it, mining BUILT the Arrowhead not the BWCAW.
there is nothing wrong with mineral extraction when done with proper mitigation strategies, procedures, and protocols. Unfortunately, people dont think they need to follow these, because then they wouldnt make as much money. Then, when the price of the valued material drops to a point that in not sustainable, then the mine remains shuttered, often for many years. BUT, the damage to the watershed will last longer than the mine.
OK, here's the thing, from one of those "religious right wing conservative republicans who think God gave them the planet to turn the whole place into an unlivable contaminated garbage dump" people. First, how incredibly cynical and naive to label Republicans as uncaring and evil. Excuse me, but your intolorance and bigotry is showing. Secondly, if those resources are not taken from Northern MN, where do think they will be taken from instead? Do you seriously think they won't be taken, period? So if you are successfull, you've won your little war? No, you are wrong. The resources will be taken from somewhere else, and probably from somewhere else where there are no reclamation laws or laws prohibiting pollution. In other words, a third world country. So that's OK, but taking those resources in a responsible way isn't? If you really feel that way, do you consider yourself a "moral" person? How is it OK to irresponsibly exploit another region of the world, yet keeping your little pristine corner of the world untouched for your own selfish reasons?
This is just one perspective from the right, there are several more. What disgusts me the most is the intolerant drivel coming from the party that considers itself "progressive" and "tolerant".
I have spent thousands of $$$ over the years at Piragis in Ely. Steve runs the best outfitting shop in Ely. I have spent hundreds of days in the BWCAW over just the last 10 years. In fact, I spent all day today preparing for my next trip (if the ice will only go away...). I only hope that all sides involved in this discussion will permit the facts to win out over emotion. Imagine the prosperity in Ely if mining and environmental concerns can coexist. Please let all involved evaluate the merits and hazards of this change wisely.
Dayton fast-tracked the mining regulatory requirements to get this moving more quickly. The DFL now controls the state so put your anger in the right place folks.
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