|Senator Tom Saviello <firstname.lastname@example.org>|
|cc: Joan Welsh <email@example.com>, Ed Mazurek <EdMazurek1@aol.com>, “Heather Parent, Director Policy, Office of the Commissione , Maine DEP” <firstname.lastname@example.org>, “Horn-Olsen, Samantha” <Samantha.Horn-Olsen@maine.gov>, Ralph Chapman <chapmanHD37@gmail.com>, Ben Chipman <email@example.com>, Emily Cain <firstname.lastname@example.org>, Katherine Cassidy <email@example.com>, Jeff McCabe <firstname.lastname@example.org>, Jeff Gifford <email@example.com>, James Gillway Town Manager Searsport <firstname.lastname@example.org>, denise harlow <email@example.com>, “Stebbins, Mark N” <Mark.N.Stebbins@maine.gov>, Bill Galbraith firstname.lastname@example.org
See the1990 Interdepartmental memo in this group labled 1992 correspondence by LUPC describing a very early tour of Bald Mountain by Boliden. It shows that initially Boliden had anticipated mining the entire deposit top to bottom in 13 years and that the entire operation would employ between 30 and 130 people. ( This document by the way is also available as a link for anyone who would like to post it or include it in emails https://docs.google.com/file/d/0Bw0jCpuVRzgEWElOT3p4WmhDRTg/edit?usp=sharing)
Almost immediately on doing a risk assessment of the mountain which identified both the highly reactive acid generating character of ores and waste, the complete absence of neutralizing potential and anomalously high levels of arsenic, and the extremely high risk of toxic metals leaching into surrounding ground and surface waters, Boliden, the only qualified mine planning, mine development company to ever work at Bald Mountain realized that at a grade of 1% copper the cost of addressing the environmental hazards made developing the whole mine impossible. Not because the regulations had impossible or unrealistic standards but because the deposit itself was just too risky in Bolidens highly regarded professional judgment..
By 1992 they had scaled back to a much much smaller mine..only 500 feet deep as compared to the original plan of 800 and a much much smaller surface area, only 30 acres focused on a part of the deposit with a much higher average grade 1.5%. Obviously that would have employed much less than 130 and would have completed in a much shorter time frame than 13 years,
In 1993 when they basically dumped the mine for $2 million even though they had spent $20 million on it Black Hawk scaled back to an even tinier area of feasibility..a tiny little gossan pit that would have exhausted in 3 years and employed a maximum of 65 people
That is irrefutable and clearly documented in official public records..
So this jobs jobs jobs aspect has been created out of whole cloth. Just invented out of thin air.
Lindsay Newland Bowker, Environmental Risk Manager
Science & Research In The Public Interest
15 Cove Meadow Rd
Stonington, Maine 04681
So what is the point of releasing this email now, the day after the due date for all public comments on the appalling Chapter 200 Draft rule on metallic mining other than the obvious” public right to know” aspect ?
Of those on this original cc list, Ralph Chapman is the only legislator to speak publicly and on the official record about the myth of mining jobs. At the October 17 BEP Hearing on the rules Representative Chapmans testimony, which will shortly be available online at DEP’s website, spoke directly and wisely to the myth of mining as a major job creator in the local economy. My recollection is that he recalled for the BEP and Commisisoner Aho that the same sales pitch brought us the Callahan Superfund site. I believe he also referred to the data Bowker Associates had distributed in August through this email. His unreported line of the day was that mining does indeed create lots of high paying jobs….20 years later at public cost in superfund clean ups.
Lance Tapley reported this in his August article for the Phoenix as well as disclosing the huge risks at Bald Mountain Bowker Associates and JS Cummings had relayed to key legislators: Jeff McCabe, Troy Jackson,and in the very beginning John Martin
All press who had ever written about Bald Mountain or mining in Maine were also copied . So why is it with solid irrefutable proof that the claims of local jobs were pure myth, was this not reported in the coverage by Bangor Daily News of the PPH. I happen to know but cannot yet say publicly what the answer to that is. The PPH coverage of the October 17th hearings still contained that headline framing the issue as tree huggers v. jobs. What I don’t know is why. Is that because controversy sells papers or is there another agenda at work in the official editorial positions of our two major papers of record. Certainly their coverage of the October 17th hearing bore no resemblance to what I saw and heard that day.
Partly I guess, in this Bowker Associates editorial, I want to say be wary of any politician running for office or testifying who cites support for metallic mining as proof that they are for job creation. Make it a litmus test and completely disenfranchise any politician who continues this total lie about metallic mining and jobs with your vote and with your public opinion.
Lies about mining will not bring jobs to the counties.
Sound economic development policy will.
Ralph Chapmans very wise and insightful testimony pointed out that the downward population trends in the counties and his Blue Hill Peninisula district and including my own Stonington, were set in motion by forces long ago that the State of Maine under both Republic and Democrat Gubernatorial leadership just failed to address.
Insist that your legislators, your candidates for office bring real insight, real solutions to the table if their campaigns promise jobs.
Insist that our entire legislature get real on jobs and mining and stop asserting complete lies for their own gain.
This is critically important to moving us to the high ground on what we want our law and policy on mining to be.
.These past lies about the economic benefits of mining in Maine are what has kept us on this path to disaster. Those who have carried this banner of jobs for Maine through mining don’t have the political will or courage to stand up and admit that they were wrong, that they were mislead and to finally take up the task of building wise law and policy for metallic mining in Maine.
Our reality, once we put aside this smoke screen about mining bringing jobs to Maine, is that our statute, written by Pierce Atwood for its client JD Irving went through our entire code of environmental law and simply exempted mining from each and every environmental law. Our legislators say they really believe they have delivered a statute that provides an appropriate balance between whatever economic stimulus mining might really have and natural resource protections that formerly applied to mining and still apply to much less environmentally risky enterprises. A plain reading of the statute as artfully, Robert Moses style crafted by Pierce Atwoods, Tim Doyle, says in fact. mining liberated from all other law on natural resource protection and all will be well just in reliance on a promise from applicants that they will not cause any harm to the environment.
That was a huge mistake involving both republican and democrat leadership and again, no one is willing to have the political courage to admit that mistake and now step up and work to make our law and policy on mining wise and sound.
“We the people” have to make it clear that that’s what we demand, that political courage to correct course on metallic mining in Maine. If we keep on with this jobs vs trees rhetoric, we ourselves are the architects of the disaster that will costs us many pristine watershed in the state of Maine.
Our political leaders cannot will not take political risks.
We the people have to make it clear that there is no political risk in admitting we made a huge mistake with our written to JD Irvings spec statute and that we were mislead by false claims of jobs.
What I heard at the public hearing on October 17th is consensus by “we the people ” on that. We have to keep on and speak louder on that . It is clear that the Portland Press Herald and the Bangor Daily News are bot going to do what the 4th estate is supposed to do on any pubic issue. We ourselves have to get the message across to our legislative leaders loud and clear that mining is just too risky for politics.
It is urgent that we get past this dales claim of local jobs and it is urgent that we start making law and policy on metallic mining that is risk focused .
It’s almost too late.