Letter to the Editor

Is anyone aware that there is a Notice of Intent to Drill, a prelude to mining, by Green Light Metals in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest at the Medford-Bend Deposit in Taylor County and the Reef Deposit in Marathon County, just below the Dells of Eau Claire? This is a Canadian Company that has appeared to have spun the company name serval times from Badger Minerals, Aquila, Green Light Metals, and GORO.

A week ago, our group chose a supervisor to bring forth our resolution for clean water. We had resolutions from three Wisconsin Tribes as well, including the Ho Chunk, the Menominee, and the Lac du Flambeau. Four environmental groups submitted letters of opposition. We brought forth a petition with five hundred signatures of local residents. Resolutions are non-binding, they do not progress into law, yet it took the county board environmental committee very little time to shoot this down, fearing retaliation from the state legislature.

At both sites, the Reef, and the Bend, I have concerns regarding the ground water. The County Comprehensive Plans for both counties with the Reef and the Bend Deposits indicate that groundwater is zero to twenty feet from the surface. I find this very disturbing that there would be any drilling in areas that are so water rich.

Will there be DNR oversight to confirm there will be the use of steel casing to isolate any drilling fluids and any cuttings from entering the groundwater? My biggest fears on the Bend project are that some of these bore holes could be up to 1300 feet deep; in a national forest. Up to two thousand gallons of water a day are to be pumped from the Yellow River! This much water mixed drilling mud (toxic) and coolants (PFAS) has me very concerned about the safety of our water. The Eau Claire River along with a class one trout stream (Mole Brook), are a mere half mile away from where they want to drill at the Reef Deposit. What will happen to the private wells in this area just below the Dells of the Eau Claire?

Don’t we have enough water concerns already throughout Wisconsin? Do not create more damage with mining.