Staff at the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) say they have completed their review of comments received on the Northern Metals metal shredder air quality permit, and that an Environmental Impact Statement is not needed. MPCA’s Citizen Board will discuss and vote on that recommendation at a special board meeting to be held Monday, Oct. 1, at the MPCA’s St. Paul office, beginning at 9 a.m. The meeting is open to the public, and the board accepts oral and written comments. For more details, visit www.pca.state.mn.us/wfhy407.
The metal shredder is located on the west bank of the Mississippi River, just south of the Lowry Avenue Bridge.
Also following review of comments, MPCA staff have revised the facility’s amended draft air quality permit, with conditions that are more restrictive than the original draft permit. The MPCA invites all interested parties to a community informational meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 25, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., at the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board headquarters, 2117 W. River Rd. N. in Minneapolis. MPCA staff will discuss the revised draft permit, and other steps being taken to address air quality in the area around Northern Metals. The revised draft permit is available at www.pca.state.mn.us/lupg1454.
MPCA staff say that since the revised draft permit is more restrictive than the original draft, it will not be placed on formal public notice again. However the MPCA invites all interested parties to review the revised draft permit and hear more information about it and ask questions at the Sept. 25 meeting.
MPCA had planned to decide on the EIS and the revised permit late last year. After North and Northeast residents and officials spoke out against the revisions, MPCA decided to start the review process over again. Northern Metals sued MPCA, demanding that it decide the case as soon as possible.
The case has been in court since February, with back-and-forth rulings that, at various times, required MPCA to complete its work and make determinations on the EIS and the revised air quality permit; and forbade MPCA from doing any work on the EIS or the permit.
The most recent rulings gave MPCA the go-ahead to finish its work on the case.