Protect Wisconsin from Changes to Mining Moratorium Law

Target: Wisconsin State Senate President Michael Ellis

Goal: Uphold the state moratorium on environmentally harmful mining.

Due to strong environmental advocacy by the people of Wisconsin, the Mining Moratorium Law was passed fifteen years ago. This law has prevented strip mining and other environmentally damaging mining processes. This law requires that any company that wishes to mine in Wisconsin must first prove that it can conduct its operations without causing any negative environmental impact. This admirable legal landmark has protected Wisconsin from the ravages of sulfide mining and other harmful practices while also providing a model example of environmental protection that other states have since sought to emulate.

Unfortunately the law itself is being threatened by Wisconsin’s own state government. Governor Scott Walker is using the support of industry executives to attempt to overturn the Mining Moratorium Law which has stood against environmental devastation in Wisconsin. The governor recently told supporters that his top legislative priority was the passage of controversial mining legislation that would work entirely counter to the moratorium. Centerpiece to this pro-mining stance would be the Iron Mining Bill which was keyed by Geogebic Taconite preemptively purchasing mineral rights to 21,000 acres along the Penokee Range in Northern Wisconsin.

This sort of action speaks to the confidence of a well funded mining industry focused on attacking the state’s environmental movement. During the existence of the moratorium the mining industry has not been able to find a single example where they have mined without polluting water. Instead of continuing to try and work out cleaner mining solutions, the industry has poured its time and resources into lobbying the Wisconsin State Legislature into reverting laws to be more pollution-friendly.

This cannot be allowed to happen. The precedent towards eco-friendly legislation set by Wisconsin is one that must be emulated. To see it fall would not only set back Wisconsin’s own state environmental policy, but give reason for other states to forgo similar policies. Call upon the Wisconsin State Senate President to prevent the overturning of the Mining Moratorium Law.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear President Ellis,

Wisconsin paved the way for environmentally responsible legislation when it enacted its Mining Moratorium Law. This law, passed fifteen years ago, prevented strip mining and other environmentally damaging mining practices. The law required that any company that wishes to mine in Wisconsin must first prove that it can conduct its operations without causing a negative environmental impact. This proved to be a landmark piece of legislature that has protected Wisconsin from dangerous practices such as sulfide mining while providing an example of environmental protection other states have since sought to mimic.

It is an important legal precedent that is nonetheless being threatened by the state’s own governing body. Governor Scott Walker, by virtue of support from industry executives, seeks to overturn the Mining Moratorium Law which stands against environmental destruction in Wisconsin. Most worrying about this issue would be the governor’s recent comments in which he told supporters that his top legislative priority was the passage of controversial mining legislation that stands entirely counter to the moratorium. Most notably is the Iron Mining Bill, which was fast-tracked to aid Geogebic Taconite after they preemptively purchased mineral rights to 21,000 acres along the Penokee Range in Northern Wisconsin.

This speaks to the unfortunate confidence which is brimming within the mining industry as they systematically attack the state’s environmental movement. During the existence of the moratorium, the mining industry has not been able to find a single example where they have mined without polluting water. Instead of working to find cleaner mining solutions the industry has poured its time and resources into lobbying the Wisconsin State Legislature into reverting laws to be more lax with regards to pollution.

This is unacceptable. Wisconsin must uphold its mining moratorium and protect its environment. State policy cannot be allowed to be dictated by corporate lobbying. Defend existing legislation and keep the Mining Moratorium Law in place.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

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One Comment

  1. Signed! Please use recycled metal and stronger than steel wood and/or bamboo for vehicles, large buildings, ships, boats and bridges.

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