Polymet delays environmental review in Range mine project

Also this week, Polymet has announced another delay in releasing its environmental review, a step in getting the necessary permits to mine copper and other minerals in northern Minnesota. The debate over nonferrous mining, or sulfide mining, continues to consume much of the region’s political energy.

This news is perhaps welcome in that a more thorough job is being done on Polymet’s environmental work, but also a sign that these projects take great amounts of time and are subject to setbacks for any number of reasons.

The Duluth News Tribune reports that the review will be released in the spring. Permits could still be issued in 2013 with potential construction in 2014, though that is the most optimistic of schedules. Additional litigation over water permits will likely slow that timeline.

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