Joint comments to EPA re UIC for Excelsior Mining’s Gunnison Copper Project

Joint comments to EPA re UIC for Excelsior Mining’s Gunnison Copper Project

Published: January 4, 2018

By: Tom Myers, Earthworks, et al

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From the comments:

RE: Comments regarding Gunnison Copper Project Class III Draft Underground Injection Control Permit

Dear Ms. Rumrill,

The above organizations collectively appreciate the opportunity to comment on the Draft Class III Underground Injection Control Permit (UIC) for Excelsior Mining’s Gunnison Copper Project located in Cochise County, Arizona.


We have been studying this project closely for the last several years because it would utilize a largely untested technology for copper production, and carries the potential to contaminate groundwater on which multiple communities and businesses rely.

We are aware of no operating commercial copper in situ leaching (ISL) projects at greenfields sites anywhere in the United States that would provide references for their environmental performance. The Florence Copper Project in Arizona is perhaps the only comparable project, yet it has never been in commercial production and has been plagued by civic appeals to deny issuance of revised state and federal permits. At this point, it appears that the Gunnison Copper Project is on a faster path towards potential development, and therefore, is of great interest to environmental advocacy organizations both locally and nationally. 

Tagged with: uic, mining, excelsior, arizona

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