County commissioners this week unanimously extended a moratorium on new sand mining through March 2015. County commissioners also sent a letter to state officials asking for guidance on the potential permanent ban.
The data has been a source of controversy during the review process. Critics of PolyMet's mine proposal have said there are problems with the environmental study, including inaccurate data.
More than 2,100 people packed a Saint Paul RiverCentre ballroom, matching in size but surpassing in feistiness the combined 2,000 or so people who attended two earlier meetings in Duluth and Aurora.
Debate over the need for long-term water treatment has dominated public testimony surrounding PolyMet's proposed copper-nickel mine, but the agencies studying the plan didn't ask the one question seemingly everyone wants the answer to: How long exactly will that treatment be needed?
Marla Beaty, a business services representative for the state's employment office, says about 800 people attended a similar event last year.
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources said the current draft of the environmental impact statement for PolyMet's mine and processing facility estimated the nearby Partridge River's flow using data that differs from other, more recent data.
Aurora, a small town of 1,600 on the northeastern edge of the Iron Range, is a hotbed of support for the proposal. Many residents once worked at LTV Steel, a nearby taconite plant that shut down in 2001, causing more than 1,000 employees to lose their jobs. PolyMet is proposing to reuse the shuttered plant.
There has been strong local support for PolyMet. Labor unions are interested in the construction and mining jobs the company would bring to the area, and local officials are excited about the potential for an economic boost.
A series of stories about the unusual, entertaining and downright risky things Minnesotans do in the depths of winter.
The first public hearing on what could be Minnesota's first copper-nickel mine drew some 1,300 people to Duluth on Thursday to rally for jobs, ask questions and poke holes in the 2,200-page environmental study that must pass muster before the project can go forward.
Minnesota is potentially on the brink of a copper mining boom. Tonight in Duluth is the first of a series of public hearings on a proposed copper-nickel mine in Hoyt Lakes. Follow updates from MPR News and Duluth News Tribune reporters.
Department of Natural Resources officials said recently that they prefer substantive, technical comments on the environmental study rather than statements of support or opposition. So how important are the thousands of comments that have already been received?
Some DFL lawmakers and environmental groups will be pushing legislation to establish a 10-cent deposit on all beverage containers, citing data showing the 10 states with deposit laws have dramatically higher recycling rates.
The maps, available on a mobile website, contain information that could otherwise be difficult to find online.
The Feb. 11 hearing will take place during the public comment period for PolyMet's proposed mine and processing facility near Hoyt Lakes.