In a largely symbolic vote, Menominee County, Michigan voted 5-4 to oppose the proposed Back Forty Mine, which is planned to be located along the banks of the Menominee River.
Several other Wisconsin counties have also passed similar resolutions that oppose having an open pit sulfide mine that they say could pollute the river.
Tensions were high during the vote, as both opponents and proponents voiced their opinions outside of the meeting hall. Aquila Resources, the company proposing the Back Forty Mine, say that they’ve put measures into place which would prevent polluting the river in the event of a total catastrophe.
The vote likely will not lead to direct action, however those opposing the mine consider it a big victory.
Menominee Tribe Chairman Gary Besaw was also in attendance stating the that there has never been an open pit mine to operate without polluting the water. He said the vote was a victory, but their work is not done.