A delegation of concerned downstream residents and elected leaders will be travelling from Minnesota to Toronto this week to raise concerns about a Canadian junior mining company’s plan to build a massive copper mine near a sensitive watershed in Duluth.
Amnesty International USA, the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy, Duluth for Clean Water, Honor the Earth, and a Duluth city councillor are among the delegates travelling to Toronto for the PolyMet annual general meeting of shareholders on June 26.
PolyMet, a Canadian junior mining company traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange, has recently obtained the final permits to build the controversial NorthMet mine in northern Minnesota. The extractives company has faced community and Indigenous opposition, including several lawsuits aimed at stopping the risky proposal. The mine would be located near a sensitive watershed, upstream from Indigenous wild rice beds and from an ecosystem that connects to Lake Superior.
Among their concerns, the delegates fear a repeat of the Mount Polley mine disaster from 2014, when a tailings dam collapsed and destroyed B.C.’s pristine Quesnel Lake. The ongoing human rights impacts of this crisis – the worst environmental disaster in Canadian history – should serve as a warning for what could happen without adequate human rights due diligence and protections in place. PolyMet is also proposing to build on top of an existing 50-year-old mine tailings dam of the same design that recently collapsed in Brumadinho, Brazil.
WHAT: Rally, photo-op and interview opportunities with delegates travelling from Minnesota to raise awareness of PolyMet’s planned copper mine
LOCATION: Toronto Stock Exchange, 130 King St. West, Toronto, Ontario
DATE: Wednesday, June 26
TIME: 11 a.m.
*Delegates will also be available for interviews by phone or in-person while in Toronto June 25-27*
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