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THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
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From our readers

Issue Date: May 16, 2019

Dear Editor:

A concerned-citizen reported that dozens of test water wells may have been vandalized and possibly contaminated. These wells cover a large area of Menominee County! This issue was reported to the Menominee County Sheriff and the (MDEQ). In this day and age this could have been a tell-tale sign of a terrorist act. Contaminating these wells with cyanide or some type of neurotoxin could cause large scale groundwater contamination and likely cause death to a large number of people.

It was reported that these wells are owned by Aquila Resources. That statement is not true. Fact: Aquila doesn't "own" the wells in question (80?) nor do they own the groundwater these wells are in. Fact: The majority of these wells are on public land owned by the citizens of Michigan and this is OUR groundwater / aquifer.

Mr. Blondeau at Aquila was asked: "if the lack of locks could have potentially led to an increased chance of these wells being tampered with, polluted or contaminated?" NO ANSWER WAS GIVEN. That is a typical Aquila tactic. If the question makes people think about risks - don't answer. Also asked "if the removal of a well cap could lead to these wells being more likely to be contaminated". His answer: "It is better to not touch things that don't belong to you." Would that comment stop a terrorist from contaminating these wells? If that works: Hey Aquila: do "not touch things that don't belong to you!" History: Persons at Aquila claimed 53,000-acres of mineral rights in Menominee County that they don't own. The MDNRE demanded Aquila remove claims to 38,000 acres of State owned land. The MDNRE did not address claims made against private lands. Aquila will touch our water (Menominee River, area's groundwater, Shakey Lakes, etc.), our air, our senses (vibrations, noise and light-pollution)? They will pollute public & private lands. Did you know that a very large percentage, almost 300-acres, of the proposed mine site is actually PUBLIC PROPERTY owned by the people of the State of Michigan? Aquila also wants to cut a path right through the heart of the Escanaba State forest for utilities and trucking-roads.

Aquila's touching will never end! Aquila would leave almost 28-billion pounds of highly reactive waste containing large amounts of sulfides, lead, mercury, cadmium, arsenic and toxic heavy metals only feet from the Menominee River, polluting our groundwater and severely impacting Shakey Lakes Park. Shakey Lakes is visited by thousands of visitors each year and generates revenue used to pay for upkeep of all other Menominee County parks.  So, Aquila: stay in Canada and "do not touch" OUR water, OUR air and OUR health as these things don't belong to you!  

Thank you,

Tom Boerner



 Dear Editor:

What is the meaning of the "Judge Issues Ruling on Mining Permits" article in the May 7th issue of the Marinette paper. First, let me explain that this is an administrative decision and is not part of the judicial process from the "bench' resulting from a trial between two opposing parties rendered by a judge presiding over a matter within the Michigan Court System.

The judge, being an employee of the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, makes his "decision report' to the director of the MDEQ which in this "contested case hearing' supports the permit that had previously been approved by the MDEQ.

As with any disagreement between opposing parties, in this case Aquila Resources, Inc. and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality on one side and on the other side two parties who oppose the permit already approved by the MDEQ; the Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin and Thomas Boerner (an adjacent property owner) who attempted to convince the MDEQ to deny the 3 permits they had previously approved for Aquila Resources, Inc. A second "contested case' hearing is scheduled to begin next month concerning the fourth permit. NOTE: This permit was previously approved by the Director of the Michigan DEQ Heidi Grether in spite of 100% of the DEQ's Water Resources Division personnel recommending the permit should not be issued.

It is interesting to note that during "hearing' sessions, Republican State Representative Tom Casperson of Escanaba, Chartine Lessard (a paid employee and lobbyist for Aquila Resources, Inc. and State Representative Ed McBroom, that whenever an item in Aquila's permit did not comply with the existing mining law 632, these folks immediately introduced and lobbied for house passage of legislation that conformed to the problem the permit faced thus making the law conform to the permit rather than requiring the permit's compliance with the law. What better proof can there be that money "well placed' in the political arena gets better results than voters at the polls?

The Contested Case hearing on which Judge Poulter gave his opinion pertains to the permits issued by the MDEQ to Aquila Resources, Inc. concerning compliance with the Michigan State law part 632, and NOT the hazards and pollution problems facing the Menominee River, the ecological damage to thousands of acres surrounding the mine site, their abandoned "slime pit' called a tailings pond, and the acid mine drainage left behind when their mining and ore extraction process is completed. This problem is unsolvable and will remain forever!!

When over 975 of the people in Menominee and Marinette Counties disapprove of the "Back Forty' mine, why do our elected officials continue to ignore the people who elected them to office?

William G. Boerner,

Marinette



Letter to Editor:

When is enough enough!

How much can we take with industrial pollution destroying our waterways and the health of our people, are they that selfish that all they care about is making themselves rich and not protecting health and welfare of the people and generations that will pay. They don't care about the generations that will suffer from their negligence. Are we only focused on ourselves now and not what happens years down the road. We need to step up to the plate and get our heads out of our keisters.

Aquila Resources, a Canadian exploration company, say everything is taken care of. Let me ask how can even one permit be issued when they don't have a plan of disaster, how would you stop a spill from going into the river. We the people have to say no to their contingency plan of disaster.

They, Aquila, say they will monitor the mine after closure if it goes through for how long. The duration of the earth that holes 850' deep filled with toxins and acid mine drainage AMD. It will never go away, it will be here for eternity.

How can we let this happen to the 2nd biggest tributary to the Great Lakes. Aquila says it will be safe to the environment and the water when there has never been one open-pit metallic sulfide in the world that has not failed.

so why is the Menominee River rated two of the most endangered rivers in the U.S.

Go back to Canada and put one up and prove yourself first.

Let's step up and protect the generations to come and leave it better than we have now. So get your head out of your keister.

Jeffery J. Budish,

Peshtigo


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Peshtigo, WI 54157
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