...apparent plan to deny leases to Twin Metals

Dear Editor:
In response to the US Forest Service’s apparent plan to deny leases to Twin Metals, I believe that the Forest Service official(s) are not even interested in doing the scientific review of the technological and remediation processes that would be involved in analyzing the project.
It appears that the Forest Service is again only listening to deep pocket environmental groups and the Governor who seems to be beholden to those eekillogical groups while those of us who were born here, have lived here and worked here for all of our lives, and taken care of the land and water here, don’t get much say in most of these matters.
It seems these groups are opposed to almost every industrial and transportation project in and around Ely and NE Minnesota.
The Forest Service took dozens of resorts and hundreds of privately owned cabins to create the BWCA in 1964 and then added a W in 1978 and shut down much of our recreational uses in the area and our two sawmills and a large part of our logging industry.
Additionally, with the loss of mining here, Ely’s school population went from 1775 down to the present 550 and the city population tumbled from around 6400 to its present 3460.
We were told mining and logging would be able to continue outside of the BWCAW, but that seems to be getting further from the truth!
Do you suppose the people opposed to the Twin Metals project use any of the metals derived from the minerals that plan to be mined in an environmentally sound manner....do they?
Copper, a necessary metal for generating and transmitting electrons and electricity for their lights, for their Prius’ electric motors, Wind Generators, Solar Panels, and for use in conventional motor vehicles, aircraft, and any home consumer goods that use electricity or require the electrical grid.
How about Nickel for use in making other mined metals rust resistant and making various types of stainless steels used in heart stents, surgical tools, nickel-plated hardware, food preparation equipment, etc.
The Platinum Palladium group minerals are used in automotive catalytic converters to clean exhaust emissions, for use in dental applications, computers, cell phones, i-pads, and many other types of electronics.
How long do you think a community’s businesses, schools, hospital, can stand on one leg of what used to be a three legged stool? Mining, Logging, and Tourism. Try standing on just one of your legs all day, every day!
It’s time to support sound technological and environmentally acceptable scientific processes to move forward and work with Twin Metals to facilitate this project.
Let’s do this project here in an environmentally acceptable way. This town, our schools, our businesses, the area, the state, and our nation need and will benefit from it.
Like we used to say where I worked, I want a partner...NOT an opponent! It applies here, too!!
Bill Erzar
Life Long Ely Resident