After two days of public comments and a few hours of questions and deliberations, the Nevada County Planning Commission unanimously voted to deny both the Final Environmental Impact Report and the use permit for the reopening of the Idaho-Maryland Mine.
In 2021, SYRCL’s Board of Directors unanimously voted to oppose the reopening of the Idaho-Maryland Mine due to the significant potential environmental impacts that would occur as a result of the proposed mining operations. We continued to oppose the project due to concerns that mining operations would introduce pollution into our waterways, dewater groundwater, and dry up private wells that are already being adversely impacted by long periods of drought. Further, legacy mining impacts include serious health impacts for community members who may be exposed to heavy metals such as arsenic and mercury. Health impacts due to the massive increase in greenhouse gases that will degrade local air quality are also of concern, especially in an area already coping with poor air quality.
SYRCL Board President George Olive, Aaron Zettler-Mann, SYRCL’s Watershed Science Director and Interim Executive Director, Gianna Setoudeh, SYRCL’s Policy Director, Alecia Weisman, SYRCL’s Headwaters Science Program Director, and Daniel Elkin, SYRCL’s Communications and Engagement Director, all delivered public comments at the meeting.
- At timestamp 6:30 (approximately) see comments by Gianna Setoudeh, Policy Director; Alecia Weisman, Headwaters Science Program Director; and Aaron Zettler-Mann, Interim Executive Director
- At timestamp 7:32 see comments by Daniel Elkin, Communications Director
- At timestamp 7:57 see comments by George Olive, Board President
SYRCL applauds the Planning Commission for its unanimous vote to not recommend the reopening of the Idaho-Maryland Mine and, more importantly, not recommend certification of the Final Environmental Impact Report. However, the fight against the mine is not over.
The Nevada County Board of Supervisors will consider the Planning Commission’s recommendation no earlier than August 2023. More on the next steps can be found on the County’s website and this Nevada County News Flash.
SYRCL wants to thank MineWatch and Community Environmental Advocates Foundation for championing this effort, their unwavering dedication, and for being indefatigable protectors of our environment.
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