U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT NEWS RELEASE
|Release Date: 07/19/12|
BLM issues final environmental assessment on Destiny Mine proposal (07-19-12)
CAÑON CITY, Colo. – The BLM Royal Gorge Field Office has released the final environmental assessment for a proposal by Destiny Mining, LLC for a combination gold mine and sand/gravel operation on federal lands outside the city limits of Fairplay, Colo.
The RGFO reached a finding of no significant impact for the mining proposal. Destiny Mining, LLC now has approval to move forward with a 5-acre operation on an 80-acre parcel of BLM-managed lands, which has been under mining claim since 1993.
In addition to the BLM’s thorough analysis, this project is subject to the Colorado Division of Reclamation Mining and Safety permitting requirements. This review is currently in process. Other regulatory agencies with oversight include the Mining Safety and Health Administration, and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.
In July 2009, Destiny Mining LLC submitted an application for this project. The RGFO initiated an EA, beginning with a public scoping meeting in Sept. 2009. The public identified concerns including air quality, noise and impacts to cultural resources. The RGFO worked with other federal and state agencies to analyze and address these concerns in the draft EA.
Air quality impacts were analyzed in conjunction with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment who determined the necessary permits this project will need. Although this project will be outside the Fairplay town limits, the RGFO applied the Town’s municipal noise codes, setting a limit of 55 dB at the mine’s boundary. The operator contracted a noise engineer to develop mitigation measures necessary to meet the 55 dB requirement. An initial cultural resources inventory found a possible archaeological site in the area, so the operator hired a contractor to determine whether the site was eligible for the National Register of Historic Places. The survey determined that the site was not eligible, and the State Historic Preservation Office agreed.
The draft EA was released for a 30-day public comment period in Sept. 2011. The BLM received 73 substantive comments that are addressed in the final EA.
Mining federal minerals, such as gold, is governed under the 1872 mining law. This legislation gives a claimant the legal right to explore for and develop valuable minerals on a claim. Under this law, the BLM is limited to mitigating and preventing unnecessary impacts to the public lands. The BLM had discretion in approving the sand and gravel portion of the Destiny Mine application but not the gold placer portion.
Last year in Colorado, mineral and energy development on public lands generated more than 22,900 jobs and $4.9 billion dollars.
The final EA and FONSI can be found online at: www.blm.gov/co/st/en/fo/rgfo/minerals/locatable_minerals/destiny_mining_proposal.html
Hardcopies will be made available at the BLM Royal Gorge Field Office, 3028 East Main Street, Cañon City, Colo. 81212, and at the Fairplay Library, 418 Main Street, Fairplay, Colo. 80440.
The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's multiple-use mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. In Fiscal Year 2012, activities on public lands generated $4.6 billion in revenue, much of which was shared with the States where the activities occurred. In addition, public lands contributed more than $112 billion to the U.S. economy and helped support more than 500,000 jobs.
3028 E. Main Street Canon City, CO 81212
|Last updated: 07-19-2012|
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