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Environmental groups appeal PolyMet mine permits

January 22, 2019

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Environmental groups are appealing air and water permits approved for the proposed PolyMet copper-nickel mine in northeastern Minnesota.

The groups argue the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency ignored evidence that PolyMet intends to process more ore daily than called for in its air permit. And they argue the company’s water permit improperly allows pollutants to be discharged to groundwater.

PolyMet would be the state’s first copper-nickel mine. Opponents fear it could send sulfuric acid and other pollutants downstream as far as Lake Superior.

PolyMet says the mine can operate without harming the environment while providing hundreds of jobs.

The groups include the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy, Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness, Center for Biological Diversity and the Sierra Club. Another group, WaterLegacy, filed its own appeal.

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