Committee votes to lift Wisconsin’s sulfide mining moratorium

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The Senate committee overseeing mining voted 3-2 to approve a Republican bill that would end Wisconsin’s sulfide mining moratorium. The 1998 legislation requires companies seeking to mine sulfide ores such as copper, zinc and gold to prove similar North American mines had operated for 10 years and been closed for 10 years without causing pollution. > Wisconsin Public Radio

Committee to vote on lifting 19-year-old mining moratorium

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A legislative committee is set to approve a bill Wednesday that would lift Wisconsin’s moratorium on sulfide mining. Lawmakers passed a bill in 1998 requiring sulfide mining applicants to prove a North American sulfide mine has operated for 10 years and been closed for 10 years without polluting before they can get a permit in the state. > WLUK Green Bay

In Wisconsin, GOP pushes to end sulfide mining moratorium

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Four years after relaxing the state’s iron mining laws, Wisconsin Republicans are pushing to lift a moratorium on copper and gold mining — a ban Gov. Walker helped pass as a legislator. The bill would eliminate the moratorium as well as exempt large-scale sampling from environmental impact statements and weaken the case hearing process.  > WNMU Public Radio

Sen. Tiffany: Lifting mining moratorium is about jobs

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State Sen. Tom Tiffany (R-Hazelhurst) has authored a bill that would make sulfide mining for copper and silver easier, saying it’s all about job creation in northern Wisconsin. But a spokesman for the Sierra Club said the number of potential jobs isn’t worth the potential harm to the environment. > Wisconsin Public Radio

Back Forty mine and GOP bill renew fight over economics, environment on Wisconsin-Michigan border

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Sen. Tom Tiffany (R-Hazelhurst) and Rep. Rob Hutton (R-Brookfield) say it’s time to abandon the mining moratorium signed by Tommy Thompson in 1998, introducing a bill in August that would repeal the “prove it first” law and relax regulations on wetlands, groundwater, companies’ financial stability and permitting. But area residents are fighting to stop the mine. > Cap Times

Meteor Timber seeks changes to wetland permit for Monroe County frac plant

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Wisconsin environmental regulators are considering new conditions for a controversial Monroe County frac sand plant that would require what environmentalists call “massive” wetland destruction. > La Crosse Tribune

Wisconsin budget bill strips local government control of quarries

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Last-minute changes to the state budget would strip local governments in Wisconsin of the right to regulate quarries, and some fear the proposals could be expanded to take away town and county control over the frac sand mines that dot the western part of the state. > La Crosse Tribune