MINER Act Passes U.S. House, Moves to Senate

November 30, 2017 11:04 PM

A victory for mining supporters on the Iron Range. Rep. Tom Emmer's MINER Act passed the full House on Thursday. It stops a proposed 20-year ban on mineral exploration near the Boundary Waters and renews mineral leases for Twin Metals.

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Emmer's office sent a statement. "The MINER Act reverses the misguided, last minute actions of the Obama Administration to stop any exploration of one of the most valuable precious metal deposits in the world. The MINER Act is about protecting Minnesota's right to explore and, if environmentally appropriate, mine valuable precious metals."

Twin Metals said in a statement, "Twin Metals is grateful for the strong bipartisan support shown by Congress today for the working families and communities of Northeast Minnesota. Today's vote demonstrates Congress' belief that environmentally-responsible mining can and should be an important component of the region's and the nation's future economic security and prosperity."  The company also thanked Minnesota's congressional members who support them, Rep. Paul Gosar from Arizona, along with dozens of community, labor and business organizations.

The group Sportsmen for the Boundary Waters is strongly opposed to the bill. They also sent a statement: 

"The continued progress of this radical bill is deeply disturbing," said Jason Zabokrtsky. "Tom Emmer is attempting to single out Minnesota as unworthy of five bedrock conservation laws, all to ensure a foreign mining company is granted the right to build dangerous mines on the edge of Minnesota's most iconic public lands."

The MINER Act now moves to the U.S. Senate.


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