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WaterLegacy Files Lawsuit over Mesabi Nugget Variance?>

Re-Posted from Read the full post here.

06.03.13 |  WaterLegacy, represented by Paula Maccabee, filed suit in Minnesota Federal District Court asking the Court to overturn as “arbitrary and capricious” the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) decision to allow the Mesabi Nugget iron plant a “variance” from complying with water quality standards.

Similar lawsuits were filed by the Fond du Lac and Grand Portage Bands of the Lake Superior Chippewa.

The EPA variance would allow Mesabi Nugget to violate water quality standards for total dissolved salts, bicarbonates, hardness and ionic conductivity, although these pollutants can harm the aquatic food chain and natural stands of wild rice. Both Mesabi Nugget and regulating agencies agree that water pollution treatment is feasible and commercially available to provide compliance with water quality standards.

In explaining the litigation to news reporters, WaterLegacy explained, “What we are really saying is that Minnesota water quality standards apply to everyone, including the mining industry, and that the standards should be applied and enforced rather than making exceptions for the convenience of the industry.” Read more about the case on Minnesota Public Radio’s web site.

Learn more by reading WaterLegacy’s Complaint.

Public Comment Period Open for U.S. Steel Corp.- Minntac | MN?>

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) proposes to issue Air Emission Permit No. 13700005-006, to US Steel Corp for their facility located at 8819 Old Highway 169, Mountain Iron, St. Louis County, Minnesota.

Public Comment Period Begins: June 8, 2013
Public Comment Period Ends: July 8, 2013

According to the MPCA statement, “the permit action is for construction and operation of the facility. The permit action is a major amendment; therefore, the draft/proposed permit has been placed on public notice. The MPCA is seeking the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) concurrent review of this draft/proposed permit and the EPA45-day review period will begin with the 30-day public review period.”

“This Major Amendment permit action authorizes the replacement of the existing main kiln burners with Low Nitrogen Oxides (NOx) Main Burners on the facility’s induration lines 4 and 5 (CE 181 with SV 118 and CE 182 with SV 127; respectively). This project will reduce NOx emissions from baseline emission rates. Remaining pollutants will remain at previously permitted rates.”

For the full text of this announcement and information on how to submit your comments, click here.

For more information on this and other MPCA notices visit,

Public Comment Period Open for Northshore Mining Co. | MN?>

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency announces intent to major modify NPDES and SDS Permit for Northshore Mining Co. – Peter Mitchell Facility, Babbitt, Minnesota.
Public Comment Period Begins: May 9, 2013
Public Comment Period Ends: June 10, 2013
The principal activity at this facility is the open pit mining of taconite ore for processing into taconite pellets and is further described in the draft permit. According to the MPCA statement, “The purpose of this major permit modification is to address the replacement of the existing domestic wastewater treatment system. The company is proposing to replace its existing Imhoff tank and trickling filter domestic wastewater treatment systems with a lined three cell stabilization pond system. The domestic system treats domestic wastewater generated from the crusher buildings and does not include any wastewater from mining activities.”
For more information on how to submit your comments click here.
For more information on other MPCA notices visit,
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