Northeast Wisconsin Legislators Introduce Resolution Opposing UP Back 40 Mine Project
Bi-partisan opposition to controversial mining project on Menominee River
MADISON, WI – Representative Amanda Stuck and Senator Dave Hansen were joined today by Reps. Eric Genrich & Jeff Mursau in introducing a bi-partisan Joint Resolution in opposition to Aquila Resources’ proposed Back Forty Mining Project along the Menominee River in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.
“We are calling on the State of Michigan to oppose this project and for the Wisconsin DNR and Governor Walker to voice their concerns about this mining proposals potential negative impacts on Northeast Wisconsin. Jeopardizing everything from tourism, ground and surface water, and property values,” stated Rep. Amanda Stuck.
Bi-partisan opposition to the proposed mine is growing in Northeast Wisconsin due to increasing concerns about the potential harm it could cause to the Menominee River and Green Bay as well as the employees and businesses that depend on those waterways for their livelihood. Several city councils and county boards including Brown County and the City of Marinette have passed similar resolutions opposing the mine.
“As polarized as our state is there seems to be strong bi-partisan opposition to the Back 40 Mine,” Hansen said. “And people are rightly concerned. Because it is a sulfide mine the potential for great harm to our lakes, rivers and Green Bay is significant. The mine could result in polluting the river, the Bay and area drinking water, not to mention the harm it could have on our area tourism industry and the families who earn their living from it.”
With the location of the proposed open pit metallic sulfide to be just 150 feet from the Menominee River, the boarder between Michigan and Wisconsin, which flows into Green Bay, it is imperative that the State of Wisconsin have a say and input on the mining proposal. Any negative impacts from the mine would equally impact Wisconsin as well as Michigan where the proposed mine will be located.
“Residents across northeast Wisconsin are very concerned about the impact this mine will have on their community and the health of their children and grandchildren,” Stated Rep. Stuck. “This is too important of an issue to keep quiet, which is why counties across Northeast Wisconsin are speaking out in opposition to the proposal, we join their voices opposed to the Back 40 Mine.”
The Menominee River and Green Bay are home to a variety of significant habitat and species including a rebounding sturgeon population and fresh water mussels—all of which could be put at risk if the mine is approved.
“Wisconsin should have a say in the process for approving this proposed mine because of the proximity to our border and the harmful impact the mine could have on our natural resources and public safety,” said Hansen. “That is why it so important that the Legislature take a position on the Back 40 Mine. It is our best chance to slow the process down and to make sure that the interests of our state are taken into account before the mine is approved.”