A press release distributed by a known anti-mining group published in the EagleHerald Extra (“Environmental groups to fund technical review of permit amendments for Back Forty Mine,” Jan. 17, 2019) was grossly misleading and provides a disservice to your readers.

According to The Center for Science in Public Participation (CSP2)’s own website, since 2007, the organization has been “providing technical support to a loose coalition of groups opposed to the proposed mine.”

CSP2 is the same anti-mining group that reviewed a wetland permit last year for opponents of the Back Forty mine. Furthermore, the same local environmental groups opposed to mining previously hired CSP2 to review Eagle Mine’s permits.

In 2015, it was made known CSP2 colluded with an “anti-mine coalition” and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in an attempt to derail the Pebble Mine project in Alaska.

CSP2 may claim it is independent from Mining Action Group, Front 40, and UPEC but the group is far from impartial. For the press release to suggest its “independent” is dubious at best. In fact, the press release clearly shows it has reached its conclusion before the “independent” review is conducted.

The fact of the matter is — despite anti-mining groups’ attempts to obstruct and mislead — Aquila Resources has been granted four of four final permits by Michigan’s Department of Environmental Quality. Because of Aquila’s commitment to clean mining, it has received all state and federal permissions required for the construction and commencement of operations at the Back Forty Project.

Nathan Conrad
Communications Director for the Natural Resource Development Association