Appellate Court Rules Against Massive Copper Mine Expansion
September 18, 2009
Sierra Club and its allies achieved a monumental win for Arizona’s wild lands when, on September 14, 2009, a federal appeals court struck down a federal land exchange that would have helped expand a massive copper mine north of Tucson. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) violated numerous federal laws in agreeing to exchange over 10,000 acres of public land for over 7,000 acres controlled by copper mining giant Asarco Inc., so that the company could expand its massive Ray Copper Mine. The Appellate court held that the BLM failed to properly evaluate alternatives that would have offered better protections for native species, and did not address the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s concerns about the expansion’s environmental impacts.
Sierra Club, Center for Biological Diversity, and Western Land Exchange Project have been fighting this proposal since 2001 to ensure better protections for Arizona’s pristine lands and native species, such as the desert tortoise and bighorn sheep.
Details and Documents:
Ruling on Proposed Federal Land Exchange
United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, September 14, 2009
Appeals court blocks land exchange between BLM, Ariz. copper mine
September 15, 2009 by Eric Bontrager, Greenwire
See other "Promoting Resilient Habitats" cases.