Lawsuit threatened against federal agencies in mine dispute
MENOMINEE, Mich. (AP) — Opponents of a planned zinc and gold mine in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula say they’ll sue the federal government unless it takes charge of determining whether the company will get a permit to fill wetlands.
Aquila Resources Inc. has received three of four permits it needs from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality to build the mine near the Menominee River. The department is considering the company’s application for a wetlands permit required under the federal Clean Water Act.
The Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin and the environmental law firm Earthjustice say the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency should be dealing with the wetlands permit, instead of state officials.
They say they’ll file suit in 60 days if the federal agencies don’t take control.