With only a few days before a permit allowing GTAC to test drill in the Penokee Hills may likely be granted, it is critical that you call and/or email the Wisconsin DNR and ask her to deny the permit until a wise analysis of the process can be achieved.
Ann Coakley, Bureau Director
(608) 516-2492 or (715) 365-8957
Her area: Division of Air, Waste and Remediation & Redevelopment; Waste and Materials Management. Agency Spokesperson Statewide: Federal Coal Ash Rules and Mining
Here is some language you can adapt to your needs:
RE: Application by GTAC for test drilling permit (Exploration License)
We implore the DNR to initiate a stay of action and ask for a full and complete environmental analysis of the core sample drilling process before allowing this permit.
Please remember that environmental damage can be irreparable. We ask that you allow this process to be a thoughtful one which involves scientists and the citizenry. The water in the Penokee Hills is considered to be some of the purest in the world. It is a precious resource which is possible to damage for all time.
Given numerous assertions that the formations into which the boreholes will be drilled contain pyrite and phosphate, and these pollutants would contaminate the water used in drilling, returning toxic drilling wastewater where it could infiltrate into the water table, creates a substantial risk to the environment and to public health. (From the permit application: “”At the end of the drilling phase, the drill water will be allowed time to disperse into the glacial materials.” We assume this means the SOIL.)
Denying the permit is allowable under 294.44(4)(e), “the department shall deny an application for an exploration license if the department finds that, after the activities in the exploration plan and the reclamation plan have been completed, the exploration will have a substantial and irreparable adverse impact on the environment or present a substantial risk of injury to public health and welfare.”
Other issues which may have alarming consequences include the depth (over 1400 feet) of these test drill holes and how they might interact with the sources of local drinking water; the odd mix of seeds suggested for reclamation; and so on.
In the 10 days allowed for this permit to be approved or not approved, adequate time does not exist for a wise evaluation of the process.
Thank you kindly for taking these issues under consideration. We look forward to your reply.