FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Jul 15, 2013
Permitting and Compliancence
DEQ Accepting Comments on Decision and Draft Environmental Analysis for Black Butte Copper Project
Helena – The Montana Department of Environmental Quality is accepting public comments on the Draft Environmental Assessment (EA) and preliminary decision to approve a modification to Tintina Alaska Exploration, Inc.’s existing exploration license.
The modification would authorize Tintina, based in Vancouver B.C., to construct an exploration decline into the Johnny Lee copper-cobalt-silver deposit zones at the Black Butte Copper Project located about 15 miles north of White Sulphur Springs in Meagher County, Mont. The proposed surface disturbance would be 46.5 acres, all on private land.
The DEQ has made a preliminary decision to approve the request for a modification to the exploration license with agency specific mitigations including liners for waste material storage, additional monitoring wells and other measures to protect water quality. This is not a final decision. This decision may change based on comments received from the public on this Draft EA, new information, or new analysis that may be needed in preparing the Final EA.
DEQ Director Tracy Stone-Manning said, “This exploration will provide DEQ and the public with hard data and information that can be used if and when we make a final decision on a permit for a mine.”
The decline would be used as access for an underground development drilling program to provide a more thorough understanding of the geometry and grade of the copper. The decline would also provide a 10,000 ton bulk sample for metallurgical testing as well as for other technical investigations in support of future mine planning and to minimize water quality and quantity impacts.
This Draft EA evaluates the potential impacts from this proposed modification. The DEQ must decide whether to approve the modification as proposed, deny the request for the modification, or approve the modification with mitigations.
Copies of the Draft EA can be obtained by writing DEQ Environmental Management Bureau, PO Box 200901, Helena, MT 59620, c/o Herb Rolfes, or calling (406) 444-3841; or sending email addressed to DEQTintinaBlackButteCopperProject@mt.gov.
The Draft EA will also be posted on the DEQ web page: www.deq.mt.gov. Public comments concerning the adequacy and accuracy of the Draft EA will be accepted until August 26, 2013. A public will be held before the end of the comment period.
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