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Aerial image of Upper St. Anthony Falls Lock and Dam

Corps of Engineers, partners, complete PolyMet Mining EIS

Published Nov. 6, 2015

ST. PAUL, Minn. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, have completed the PolyMet Mining Final Environmental Impact Statement, or Final EIS.

The Corps, and its partners, completed an independent and thorough review of the nearly 3,000-page document following the completion of the Supplemental Draft EIS in December 2013. The final document will be officially released Nov. 13, when it is noticed in the Federal Register. It will be noticed in the state’s Environmental Quarterly Board Monitor Nov. 9.

During the review process, the co-lead agencies received nearly 58,000 submissions on the Supplemental Draft EIS, and identified approximately 17,000 unique comments or ideas. These comments, which include those from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the cooperating agencies, were carefully considered in completing the Final EIS.

Next steps

Completion of the Final EIS marks the closure of the environmental review process. The Corps will continue its permit evaluation process by preparing a Record of Decision, which will be used to determine whether a Department of the Army permit for impacts to waters of the U.S., including wetlands, should be granted or denied. The time frame for the Corps’ permit decision is dependent upon the timing of permit decisions by state agencies, such as the Minnesota DNR and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency.

The Final EIS can be accessed by going to the Minnesota DNR’s website at: www.mndnr.gov/polymet.

The nearly 650 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, employees working at more than 40 sites in five upper-Midwest states serve the American public in the areas of environmental enhancement, navigation, flood damage reduction, water and wetlands regulation, recreation sites and disaster response. Through the Corps’ Fiscal Year 2014 $100 million budget, nearly 1,600 non-Corps jobs were added to the regional economy as well as $155 million to the national economy. For more information, see www.mvp.usace.army.mil.

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Release no. 15-058