Rally for I-186 and mining responsibility - KFBB.com News, Sports and Weather

Rally for I-186 and mining responsibility

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The Electric City kicks off a campaign supporting a responsible mining initiative, I-186. If passed in the November election, supporters said it could protect public health while holding mining companies accountable.

The idea behind the initiative is to ensure that any new mine constructed in Montana has a reclamation plan that will not require regular treatment of polluted water after the mine has closed.  This will not be applied to existing mines. Supporters of I-186 said Montana has nearly 2,500 miles of streams polluted by acid mine drainage, lead, arsenic and mercury, which has cost taxpayers millions of dollars.  Kirk Evenson said he does not understand why anyone would vote "no." 

"The unanswered questions that the citizens of Montana need to ask is if you're promising to us that we are going to mine in a responsible manor why would you be opposed to the initiative?" said Evenson.

At the rally Thursday in Great Falls, he said it is important to take into account areas like the Zortman-Landusky mine, in the Little Rocky Mountains south of Fort Belknap, which alone cost over $27 Million. But ultimately if clean-ups do not happen, he said it will impact the water and  the pollution will go on for generations.

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