According to the Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness:
"H.R. 761, the “National Strategic and Critical Minerals Production Act of 2013” would:
- ·Fast-track permitting for minerals defined as “critical and strategic”
- ·Define “critical and strategic minerals” so broadly that any mine for copper, nickel, or iron would be included (any minerals that support manufacturing, agriculture, housing, telecommunications, etc.)
- ·Result in fast-track permitting for sulfide mining proposals in Minnesota, including the proposed PolyMet mine in the Lake Superior watershed and the proposed Twin Metals mine next to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness
- ·Allow mine projects to proceed without the application of important, protective environmental laws including the National Environmental Policy Act, the Endangered Species Act and the Federal Land Policy and Management Act
- ·Bypass public and community review and input for proposed mines
H.R. 761 would silence public participation and environmental review of mine projects that could significantly impair clean water, wildlife, and the public’s use and enjoyment of cherished public lands." ALL OF THE ABOVE EMPHASIS IS ADDED BY ME. PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS BILL MAY HAVE CONSEQUENSES FOR THE MINING ACTIVITY IN THE PENOKEES AND THE SAND MINING ACTIVITY ELSEWHERE IN THE STATE OF WISCONSIN (since oil and gas have always been considered as strategic minerals).
This bill is being co-sponsored by MN Representatives Rep. John Kline (MN2-southern suburbs of Twin Cities plus 2 counties on west bank of Mississippi River) and Rep. Michele Bachmann (MN6-NW suburbs of Minneapolis). The National Mining Association urges passage of this bill and applauded the passage of the bill out of committee on 5/15/13!
Given that the House of Representatives has a Republican majority, one would expect the House to pass this bill along to the Senate. I would urge you to write your senators and urge them to vote AGAINST this bill when it reaches the Senate and to write President Obama to urge his veto should the Senate pass the bill!