Feb. 14, 2013 - Forest Service to Examine Groundwater Impacts of Mineral Exploration
The Boise National Forest is preparing a supplemental Environmental Analysis on mineral exploaration at the CuMo site near Idaho City to meet the orders of District Court Judge Edward Lodge.
To address the analysis deficiencies identified by the Court, a supplemental EA has been initiated to further analyze groundwater. The draft EA is expected to be released for public comment in May, 2013.
See for yourself Thanks to Mountain Visions, you can get a birds-eye view of the CuMo project site as well as what is now Idaho's largest open pit mine - Thompson Creek. Enjoy the tour.
On August 29, 2012, U.S. District Judge Edward J. Lodge found that the U.S. Forest Service’s actions were “arbitrary and capricious” when it approved the CuMo Exploration Project without examining potential effects to groundwater. He remanded the agency’s environmental document for further study and consideration.
When Mosquito Gold touts the economic impact of extracting minerals above the Boise River’s headwaters, a $16 billion operation that can support 1,000 high-paying jobs, we’re left with a very simple question.
The decision reached by Forest Supervisor Cecelia Seesholtz permits a Canadian mining company, Mosquito Gold Company, to conduct a five year mineral exploration project, including the construction of up to 10.2 miles of new temporary roads and four new stream crossings.
In July, 2011, Idaho Rivers United, along with the Idaho Conservation League and Golden Eagle Audubon Society, filed a complaint. challenging the Forest Service's approval of the CuMo Exploration Project. We claim the Forest Service has not evaluated what impact the extensive road construction and round-the-clock drilling activities will have on sensitive species in the project area, including wolverine, northern gawshawk, and great grey owl through preparation of an environmental impact statement that is required by the National Environmental Policy Act..
The CuMo project is located on a forested ridge on the south side of Grimes Creek upstream of Pioneerville and Idaho City, just 38 miles from Boise. Interestingly, while the project is in the Boise River watershed, it's just a stone's throw from Garden Valley and the South Fork Payette River. Conceptual drawings of the CuMo molybdenum and copper mine show a massive open pit and complete removal of the ridge.
Here's a short video just on Thompson Creek MIne near Challis. You'll get an idea of what is in store for the Grimes Creek area.