Dear Park County,
Well, it’s been warm and windy, but nonetheless, my love for this community grows deeper every day.
Last week we accomplished something special together: our federal and state land managers responded to thousands of your comments asking for more environmental review of Lucky Minerals’s exploration plan in Emigrant Gulch. They required the company to prepare an environmental assessment in order to carefully consider potential impacts to our community and to make the process open and transparent.
In response, Lucky Minerals’s pulled it’s application to explore for minerals on federal land. The company proved that we were rightfully concerned about their ability to be a good neighbor. Company representative Shaun Dykes said “it’s so stupid,” to leave the question of what minerals are in Emigrant Gulch — and how deeply underground — unanswered. “If you leave it unanswered, we’ll keep coming back.”
Mr. Dykes reminds our community and our elected officials that this is not about Lucky Minerals’s, it’s about a community fighting to protect our home. We don’t care how deep the minerals are buried — we care about what’s at risk above the ground: our water, our wildlife, our community and the ecosystem resources in the Gateway to Yellowstone National Park. These things are too incredibly valuable to allow any Canadian mining company to develop our backyard because they might be able to find something valuable.
Last week we held a community meeting to discuss our next steps. The primary goal of the meeting was to provide a platform for our community to express ongoing concerns and ask questions of our state and federal land managers.
To everyone that attended.
Especially the people of Old Chico and Emigrant: Bryan Wells, Tracy Raich, Stan Abel, Michael Britton, Jesse and Catherine Logan, Mary Swanson and Peter Murray, Marie Snyder, and Wendy Riley. If you have a chance to thank any of these folks personally, please do. Their dedication to this issue will help us win.
Thank you to business leaders in our community, especially Chico Hot Spring’s Colin Davis and Karrie Kahle, Timber Trails’s Dale Sexton, Sweetwater Travel’s Dan Vermillion, Brian Menges and the Second Street Bistro, and the Gardiner Chamber of Commerce. Colin announced that they are formalizing our business sign-ons to create a coalition opposed to industrial mining in the Paradise Valley – the Yellowstone Gateway Business Coalition.
Take Action: Join the Coalition here.
And thank you to our community partners – Federation of Flyfishers, Warriors and Quiet Waters, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, Protecting Paradise, Yellowstone Bend Citizens Council, Greater Yellowstone Coalition, Earthjustice, National Parks Conservation Association and many more.
Thank you to District Ranger Alex Sienkiewicz for the update. Thank you to Yellowstone National Park’s Doug Maddsen, to County Commissioners Steve Caldwell, Marty Malone and Clint Tinsley, Congressman Zinke’s staff Jeremy Carpenter, Senator Daines’s staff Dan, and Senator Tester’s staff Jennifer Madgic for being there and hearing our concerns.
Thank you to everyone that attended and helped us demonstrate the depth and breadth of community opposition to industrial mining in Yellowstone’s Gateway.
What’s next? Please join us in urging the DEQ to consider the highest level of environmental review on Lucky’s proposal. We will let you know as soon as they open a new comment period, likely after the holidays. If Lucky Minerals is certain there will be no impacts, they shouldn’t hesitate to prepare an environmental impact statement for mineral exploration on private land.