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Minnesota DNR launches new hearing process for PolyMet mine

The hearing will be confined to the narrow question of whether the bentonite clay lining planned for the mine’s waste basin would keep pollution contained.

ST PAUL, Minn. — Minnesota regulators have launched a court-ordered process for assessing the risks to clean water from waste from the proposed PolyMet copper-nickel mine in northeastern Minnesota. 

The Department of Natural Resources announced plans for a trial-like proceeding known as a contested case hearing, which was ordered by the Minnesota Supreme Court in April. The hearing will be confined to the narrow question of whether the bentonite clay lining planned for the mine’s waste basin would be sufficient to keep pollution contained.

A prehearing conference is set for Nov. 1. The hearing itself will be conducted later before an administrative law judge.

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