Both sides react to planned release of final Rosemont EIS

2013-11-27T17:55:00Z 2013-11-27T18:02:27Z Both sides react to planned release of final Rosemont EISTony Davis Arizona Daily Star
November 27, 2013 5:55 pm  • 

Here's what Augusta Resource Corp. and Save the Scenic Santa Ritas had to say about the Forest Service's plan to release the final environmental impact statement Friday for the proposed Rosemont Mine.

First, Augusta, from a news release around noon on Wednesday:

Augusta Resource Corporation is pleased to announce the US Forest Service has publicized that they have completed the Rosemont Copper final Environmental Impact Statement and the complete document will be posted on the USFS Rosemont project website beginning November 29, 2013.

"The publication of the Final EIS is the culmination of over six years of comprehensive environmental and technical studies and analyses," said Gil Clausen, Augusta's President and CEO. "This is an exciting and significant achievement for the company.  We are pleased that the U.S. Forest Service has completed the document and sincerely thank the team and all parties involved for their diligence and efforts. With the EIS process concluded, we can move forward and finalize the last remaining steps of permitting."

Now, from Save the Scenic Santa Ritas, from a statement released mid-afternoon Wednesday:

"Despite what Rosemont Copper would like its investors to believe, this mine is not a done deal, not even close" said Gayle Hartmann, president of Save the Scenic Santa Ritas. "Just this past week, we learned that EPA concluded that this project would cause a ‘substantial and unacceptable impact’ to critical watersheds.

"It’s rather remarkable that according to published reports, the Coronado National Forest Supervisor would admit they are rushing this analysis out the door without addressing such a critical issue.  And that's just one of the serious problems that local, state and federal agencies have told the Forest Service it needs to address. The damage this mine would cause to our water supplies, wildlife and economy is so serious that the Forest Service should have listened to its partner agencies and issued a new or revised analysis instead.”

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Star reporter Tony Davis covers topics in this blog that you have read under his byline for more than 30 years in the Southwest: water, growth, sprawl, pollution, climate change, endangered species, mining, grazing and traffic.

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