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The Fight for Water & Treaty Rights in the Great Lakes

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EPA Reverses Itself on Mesabi Nugget Variance?>

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is voluntarily vacating it’s decision to approve a Minnesota Pollution Control Agency variance for the Mesabi Nugget taconite facility.

“The MPCA had asked EPA officials to make an exception for Mesabi Nugget and allow the company to exceed water quality standards for four pollutants, including sulfate. The EPA approved that variance, but two environmental groups and two tribes said the EPA was wrong to issue the variance and sued the agency.”

To read the full story by Elizabeth Dunbar, click here.

Summer Fellowship with Save the Wild UP | MI?>

Applications Due | March 30, 2014

Save the Wild UP is offering summer fellowship opportunities during the summer 2014 Northern Michigan University semester. Course credit is available.

“Our Summer Fellows Program will get you out into the beautiful U.P. — holding events, exploring pristine wilderness and historic mining sites, door-knocking, reaching out to new people at concerts, community fests and more — all while giving you grassroots skills and experience to make a difference in your community!”

For more information visit the Save the Wild UP website at, www.savethewildup.org

Or email at, info@savethewildup.org

Exploring Geology & Engineering in a Mining Economy | WI?>

Tuesday, March 18, 2014, 7pm (CT) | Sigurd Olson Environmental Institute, Sentry Rm, Northland College, 1411 Ellis Ave., Ashland, WI

Speakers: Donald Fosnacht and George Hudak

Two scientists from the University of Minnesota-Duluth will discuss the environmental, scientific, and economic aspects of iron and metallic mining in the Lake Superior basin. Donald Fosnacht and George Hudak of the Natural Resources Research Institute at University of Minnesota-Duluth in Duluth, Minn. will focus on unique geological formations that are driving the mining boom and how modern mines are engineered to extract and process ores into raw materials.

This presentation is part of the institutes 2014 Perspectives on Mining Series. The Sigurd Olson Environmental Institute works with Northland College and regional partners to promote stewardship, identify opportunities, deliver educational programs, and facilitate solutions that address environmental issues throughout the North Country.

For more information visit the institute’s website, www.northland.edu/sigurd-olson-environmental-institute-overview.htm

or contact Jean Ayers at, jayers@northland.edu

Eagle Mine Groundwater Permit Workshop | MI?>

Tuesday, March 18, 2014, 6pm (EST) | Peter White Public Library, Lower Level, classroom 3, Marquette, MI 49849

speakers: Jeffery Loman and Michelle Halley

In preparation for the MDEQ public hearing on March 25th, Save the Wild UP will host a permit workshop. Speakers will discuss the new draft groundwater discharge permit proposed for the Eagle Mine (in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula) and its impact on your lakes, lands, and communities.

For more information visit the SWUP event page at, www.facebook.com/events/266237580207080/?ref_newsfeed_story_type=regular

Meet One on One with Gogebic Taconite | WI?>

Wednesday, March 12, 2014 | Multiple locations listed below. All times are CDT

Gogebic Taconite will be meeting one on one with concerned citizens regarding their proposed taconite mine in the Penokee Hills. Meetings will take place at five locations throughout the region. To schedule a meeting call Gogebic Taconite’s Hurley office at 715-561-2601.

7-8:15am | Schienenbeck’s Shanty, 309 S. 5th St., Butternut, WI 54514

9:15-10:30am | Vaughn Library, 502 Main St., W. Ashland, WI 54806

12:30-1:45pm | Joany’s Sidekick’s-Iron Belt, Wisconsin 77, Iron Belt, WI 54536

2:45-4pm | Gogebic Taconite Office, 402 Silver St., Hurley, WI 54534

5-6:15pm | Subway, 5116 US 51, Mercer, WI 54547

Stop the Mine! Bad River Panel Discussion | MN?>

Friday, March 14, 2014, 6-8pm (CT) | William Mitchell College of Law, Auditorium, St. Paul, MN 55105

Gogebic Taconite is proposing the world’s largest open-pit taconite mine just upstream from the Bad River reservation. This area holds some of the most beautiful and unique landscapes in the Upper Midwest, yet the Wisconsin legislature has changed the state’s mining laws to accommodate the project.

Join attorneys and representatives from the Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa to learn more about the proposed mine, how the Band plans to respond, and what you can do to help protect your Great Lakes and her people.

For more information visit the event Facebook page at, www.facebook.com/events/1379162269024279/

Treaty Rights & Mining: An Overview | WI?>

Wednesday, March 12, 2014, 7pm | Sigurd Olson Environmental Institute, Sentry Rm, Northland College, 1411 Ellis Ave., Ashland, WI

Speaker: Ann McCammon-Soltis, Great Lakes Indian Fish & Wildlife Commission

Eleven federally-recognized Ojibwe tribes in Wisconsin, Michigan and Minnesota have reserved hunting, fishing and gathering rights in territories ceded to the United States through treaties. No state may take away tribal treaty rights, nor allow the destruction of treaty-protected resources such as land or water. So, how are treaty rights affected by human activities such as mining?

Ann McCammon-Soltis, director of the Division of Intergovernmental Affairs at the Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission Director will provide an overview of Treaty Rights and Mining.

This presentation is part of the institutes 2014 Perspectives on Mining Series. The Sigurd Olson Environmental Institute works with Northland College and regional partners to promote stewardship, identify opportunities, deliver educational programs, and facilitate solutions that address environmental issues throughout the North Country.

For more information visit the institute’s website, www.northland.edu/sigurd-olson-environmental-institute-overview.htm

Public Comment Period & Hearing on Eagle Mine Discharge Permit | MI?>

Tuesday, March 25, 2014, 6pm | Westwood High School, 300 S. Westwood Dr., Ishpeming, MI 49849

Contact: Ms. Jeanette Bailey, 517-284-5571.

Public Comment Period Ends: April 1, 2014

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) will be conducting a Public Hearing to receive formal public comment on the reissuance of a Groundwater Discharge Permit for the Eagle Mine. The draft permit will authorize the discharge of a maximum 504,000 gallons per day (184,000,000 gallons per year) of mine contact water only to the ground and groundwater from their discharge areas. (MDEQ press release) Oral presentations will be limited to 5 minutes.

Additional public comments will be accepted until April 1, 2014. Comments should be submitted to: Department of Environmental Quality, Water Resources Division, Permits Section, P.O. Box 30458, Lansing, Michigan 48909

To view the Groundwater Discharge Permit Application visit the MDEQ website here.

For more information and an analysis of the application visit the Save the Wild UP website here.

Save the Wild UP Open House | MI?>

Saturday, Feb., 22, 2014, 4-6pm | Java by the Bay, 10 N. Main St., L’Anse, MI 49946

Save the Wild U.P. is committed to protecting the unique culture and environment of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Join SWUP on Saturday, February 22nd to learn more about their work and how to get involved!

Speakers will include former federal oil regulator Jeffery Loman, SWUP President Kathleen Heideman, and SWUP Executive Director Alexandra Thebert.

For more information visit SWUP on Facebook at, www.facebook.com/events/279228038899797/

Author Craig Childs to Speak at Northland College?>

Thursday, Jan. 30, 2014, 7pm | Sigurd Olson Environmental Institute, Northland College, Ashland, WI

The 2013 Sigurd Olson Nature Writing Award (SONWA) recipient, Craig Childs, will accept his award and give a public presentation on his winning book, Apocalyptic Planet, Field Guide to the Everending Earth at the Sigurd Olson Environmental Institute. Chosen from 56 submissions,  “Apocalyptic Planet,” recounts Childs’ field trips to nine different global locations currently experiencing the same major environmental disruptions that occurred during periods of mass extinctions—places that Childs describes as “the most desolate, phenomenal and downright strange parts of the world.”

For more information contact, Paula Bonk at, pbonk@northland.edu, or visit, www.northland.edu/calendar.htm#sthash.14Ql2UGK.dpuf

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