Friday, May 14, 2010

Inside EPA News: Pending EPA ruling on Michigan mine could expand reach of UIC permits

MARQUETTE -- [From Stand for the Land] -- Daily News from InsideEPA.com -- Thursday, May 13, 2010:

EPA is nearing a decision on whether discharges from a proposed Michigan mine must be permitted under the federal underground injection control (UIC) program, a decision that industry sources say could set a precedent requiring non-hazardous discharges from scores of other facilities -- including wastewater, energy, mining and others that use above-ground discharges -- to seek first-time permits.

"It would be such a massive expansion of the UIC program to things that it has never been applied to before," one industry source says of the possibility that EPA may require a permit.

EPA Region V officials and leaders of the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community [were] scheduled to meet May 14 to discuss EPA’s pending decision, after regional and headquarters officials have spent months reviewing Kennecott Eagle Mineral Co.’s claims that a redesign of its proposed treated water infiltration system (TWIS) eliminates the need for a UIC permit.

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