DNR statement on PolyMet court decision

April 28, 2021


The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is currently reviewing today’s Minnesota Supreme Court decision on the PolyMet permit to mine and dam safety permits.

We appreciate and respect the Court’s careful evaluation of issues related to the DNR’s first application of Minnesota’s non-ferrous mining statute and rules.

Notably, the Court offered a clarifying interpretation of who has standing to request a contested case hearing, but concurred with the DNR’s application of the standards for granting a contest case hearing. 

The Court found ample evidence in the permit records to support the DNR’s decisions on the critical issues of dam safety and tailings basin closure. 

The Court further found that DNR did not need to hold a contested case hearing on financial assurance or whether Glencore was required to be on the permit to mine at the time of permit issuance.

We will carefully review and implement the Court’s instructions regarding establishing a fixed term for the permit to mine and granting a contested case hearing on whether bentonite is a practicable and workable technology to reduce oxygen infiltration into the project tailings.