Iron ore strip mining: Economic boon or environmental blight?

By Kay Nolan,  February 20, 2013

Kay Nolan is a contributing writer for This article ran in the February 20, 2013 issue.

MILWAUKEE — A leading supporter and a leading opponent of a proposed Gogebic Taconite iron ore mine in northern Wisconsin agree on one thing: More
mining projects could be in the works throughout the state, if new mining legislation that eases the permitting process gets approved.

Scott Manley of Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce (pictured, right) says that’s good news. He touts the potential to bring high-paying jobs all across a
state hit hard by manufacturing job losses in recent decades.

“We have some other significant metallic mineral deposits in this state that remain untapped, including some gold deposits, and there actually are some
companies that are interested in looking there as well, but it’s not going to happen without change to the law,” Manley said Tuesday, referring to a purported gold deposit near Wausau. “The economic impact of all this — although the epicenter would be Iron County — would ripple throughout the entire state.”