MAC: Mines and Communities

Letters to US Media & Legislators on Crandon Mine Site Purchase

Published by MAC on 2002-07-30

Letters to US Media & Legislators on Crandon Mine Site Purchase

You can use the five paragraphs below for ideas for Letters to the Editor. At the end of media letters, or on radio call-in shows, add:

"For more information, log on or call toll-free 1-800-445-8615."

Letters to Decisionmakers:

You can also use these five draft paragraphs to write your own letters. Please don't use them exactly as written, but to generate your own thoughts. Be sure to include your name and address and ask for a response. Personal letters are much more effective than e-mails. Add personal touches such as where you are from, why this is important to you personally, or even how long you have been opposing the mine proposal and why.

Governor Scott McCallum,
115 East State Capitol,
Madison, WI 53702

Natural Resources Board,
PO Box 7921
Madison, WI 53707

(Ask that copies be distributed to NRB members)

Your State Senator.
PO Box 7882,
WI 53707
E-mail: Sen.(last name)

Your Assembly Representative
PO Box 8952 (last names A-L) or PO Box 8953 (last names M-Z),
Madison, WI 53708
E-mail: Rep.(last name)

If you don't know your legislators, call 1-800-362-9472.

Please send copies of letters to: Wolf Watershed Educational Project,
PO Box 124,
White Lake, WI 54491

Sample letters:

1) I am writing to you today to ask you to actively support the Wolf River Headwaters Protection Purchase. Public acquisition of this beautiful area will prevent the possibility that the Crandon mine would harm our environment. Please support a permanent and inclusive solution that rules out the future resurrection of the Crandon mine proposal. The natural and cultural resources of the site must be safeguarded for the future by an integrated board made up of state, local and tribal government, and private organizations. It is important to ensure that the State of Wisconsin and other potential buyers pay a realistic price for the mine site, using a mix of public and private funds. Funding sources such as the Wisconsin Stewardship Fund will not impact the state budget and have been used in the purchase of similar environmentally valuable areas. This purchase will enable sustainable development to replace a risky mine proposal. Now is the time to take a stand for future generations.

2) I am writing to ask for your active support for the Wolf River Headwaters Protection Purchase. I too am very concerned about the price for the acquisition, but also recognize that there are significant natural and cultural values at the site that deserve permanent protection. The use of the Stewardship Fund for the purchase is entirely consistent with the goals of the Fund; permanent protection of sensitive lands threatened by development. In this case, the development pressure is the Crandon mine proposal. But the site could also be carved up and sold off in pieces should the company choose to do so. We have a unique opportunity now to protect the site in one piece and also develop a wonderful new public recreation site that will help encourage tourism in an area of the state in need of economic development. This investment for future generations also places no burdens on the state budget. Please help us permanently protect these tremendous natural and cultural resources forever.

3) I am writing to ask you to actively support for the Wolf River Headwaters Protection Purchase. The state of Wisconsin has a unique opportunity to protect the Wolf River and the site of the proposed Crandon mine and permanently halt the battle over the mine with no impact to the state budget. Millions of dollars have been spent on research and study of the mine site and prove that it is worthy of public acquisition and protection. It makes perfect sense to use the Stewardship Fund to acquire the site and further protect the Wolf River, one of only three National Wild and Scenic Rivers in Wisconsin. It makes no sense to spend state resources to protect the Wolf, but leave its tributaries unprotected from incompatible development such as mining. There are significant cultural resources at the site, such as burial sites of Chippewa who died during the 1806 war with the Sioux over wild rice. There is the wild rice itself just downstream from the site to Rice Lake. Limited disturbance to the site has preserved biological diversity, unusual and rare habitats, and over 750 plant and animal species, including more than 50 endangered, threatened and special-concern species. Several sites within the purchase site exhibit natural values that would qualify for designation as state Natural Areas. Please support this investment to create and protect a new public resource for future generations.

4) I am writing to ask for your active support for the Wolf River Headwaters Protection Purchase. Public acquisition of the site will permanently protect natural and cultural values of the site of the proposed Crandon mine and permanently end the battle over the mine itself without impacting the state budget. The development of an integrated board made up of state, local and tribal governments and private organizations will ensure that the site is permanently protected and managed in a manner consistent with goals of sustainable development and public recreation. The price of the site must not include any potential for a mine to operate there but should be a fair price based on the value of the lands at the site. Funding for the purchase should be a mix of private and public sources including the Stewardship Fund. Using the Fund to protect the site is consistent with its goal of protecting lands threatened by development and would not add new burdens to the state budget. This is an extraordinary opportunity to invest in a site that will become a new public recreation resource while still protecting important cultural and natural resources at the site and the Wolf River.

5) I am writing to ask for your active support for the Wolf River Headwaters Protection Purchase. The Purchase is necessary to protect the Wolf River from the Crandon mine, which has been proposed for 26 years. The mine faces enormous hurdles to receive a permit, and it may seem unnecessary to purchase the site as a safeguard against the mine. But mining companies have left Wisconsin before. After a 10-year battle, Exxon dropped from its Crandon mine permit in 1986, but because it still owned the land, the company was able to return in 1992, for another decade- long pemit fight. I don't want the current project owner BHP Billiton (or any other company) to return to Wisconsin for another round. It is also important for the site to not be controlled by only one owner, such as the State, which could give the go-ahead for a future mine. The strongest protection for the land is joint management by an integrated board of state, tribal, and local governments and concerned private organizations. I want a permanent and inclusive solutions that rules out the resurrection of the Crandon mine. This way, we can protect not only local environment and tourism economy for our generation, but also for future generations.

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