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A CLARIFICATION: FRIENDS OF HAWN IS NOT ALIGNED WITH THE MINE.
Almost two weeks ago, the Friends of Hawn announced it had secured a settlement with Nexgen through the resolution of its challenge to the Land Reclamation Permit issued by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources. This was the first of multiple permits Nexgen is required to obtain for operations at the proposed mine site. We know there is some confusion about our position so to be clear the Friends of Hawn is not aligned with Nexgen regardless of the spin in some circles and the selective use of two sentences from our multi-page press release.
The fact is the Friends of Hawn have secured legally enforceable protections for the benefit of Hawn State Park, surrounding natural areas and the local community. These protections exceed any requirement under Missouri law that could have been imposed on Nexgen for the site. Moreover, these protective conditions are enforceable. The enforceability of the provisions is what will keep them from becoming empty promises. Despite these protections, the Friends of Hawn continue to have concerns about the proposed mine related to water permitting for the site and are monitoring those developments. The Friends of Hawn have not foreclosed challenging the water permit and direct those interested to our full press release located at: https://friendsofhawn.org/press/
It is important to understand, our settlement does not resolve any other legal challenge brought by any other party. Though some may not agree with our decision and we respect those opinions we must not let others sow division. In the end, we are all in this together doing the best we can, with the resources we have, against a well-funded adversary. We continue to wish Operation SAND well in its current efforts and hope the County Commissioners continue to act in the best interest of their constituency.
The FRIENDS OF HAWN announces the following protections for the park regarding the Sainte Genevieve silica mine. We continue to have concerns regarding the yet to be issued permit from the Water Protection Program and the effect on area water resources. Accordingly, the Friends of Hawn will continue to monitor the legal processes and raise concerns or legal challenges as it deems appropriate.
In summary, this agreement:
• Requires the use of outdoor lighting fixtures at the site that are designed and positioned to prevent glare and light pollution to protect the park’s dark sky.
• Limits noise pollution by restricting blasting hours.
• Abate noise pollution through the construction and maintenance of a 30′ high earthen berm between the facility and Highway 32.
• Ensure additional resources are available to reclaim the affected land by increasing the surety bond for the site.
Full details are in the listed in the Press Release (link here):