ICYMI: Twin Metals' Owner Inks Deal to Supply Copper to China
Late last week, it was reported that Antofagasta PLC, owner of the Twin Metals mining project on the doorstep of the Boundary Waters, has once again inked deals to supply copper concentrates from its mines to Chinese smelters. This copper will then be turned around and sold on the world market.
"Twin Metals boosters like Pete Stauber are flat wrong when they say mining near the Boundary Waters is about American interests," said Becky Rom, National Chair of the Campaign to Save the Boundary Waters, "Let there be no mistake, the end result of toxic mining on the edge of the Boundary Waters will be the enrichment of foreign profits at the cost of America's most visited Wilderness. Pete Stauber would turn Northern Minnesota into a resource colony for a Chilean mining conglomerate and it's multinational partners."
Last week’s copper supply contract with the Chinese smelters covers at least the first half of 2022, and extends a long line of such supply/smelting contracts with Chinese smelters, dating at least to 2015. Antofagasta’s long history of supplying Chinese smelters, and the supply deal signed last week, show that any metals mined by Twin Metals would likely continue to supply China.
The Boundary Waters is the most heavily visited wilderness area in the United States, attracting more than 160,000 visitors from all over the world and helps drive more than $900 million in annual economic activity and helps support over 17,000 jobs. In 2016 the US Forest Service terminated the Twin Metals project because of the inherent risk of irreparable harm to the Wilderness. Nearly seventy percent of Minnesotans support a ban on sulfide-ore copper mining near the Wilderness to permanently protect the Boundary Waters.