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Minnesota: The Trump/Chilean/Antofagasta/Twin Metals/Northeast Minnesota/Copper Mining Connections (ENV, AA)

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The Trump/Chilean/Antofagasta/Twin Metals/Northeast Minnesota/Copper Mining Connections

 

By Gary G. Kohls, MD – 11-13-2018

Pictured above are Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump, Andrónico Luksic Craig and the $5.5 billion Washington, DC town house that Kushner and Trump leased from Luksic, the CEO of Antofagasta Holdings and the richest man in Chile. Luksic purchased it the week after Donald Trump won the election and immediately leased it to Kushner.

Iván Arriagada Herrera, the CEO of Antofagasta Minerals S.A. (since 2015) and Antofagasta plc (since 2016) said that Donald Trump’s election has created a “more favourable climate for the development of the (Northern Minnesota Twin Metals) project.”

Arriagada recently said that Antofagasta’s Twin Metals unit was preparing an environmental impact assessment for an underground copper-nickel mine in Minnesota. (Twin Metals was a Canadian Penny Stock mining company until Antofagasta acquired 100% of the company’s shares a few years ago.)

But the project hinges on the resolution of a legal dispute with the US government, which under former President Barack Obama, refused to renew the company’s mineral leases in 2016 to protect the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness area from possible pollution.

But the dispute would still need to be settled in court, he said, adding: “We’ll keep defending our right to develop the mine.” Trump’s election makes the deal much more likely to happen, given the strong pro-extractive business climate of the Trump administration.

When Guillermo Luksic died in 2013, his older brother Andrónico Luksic stepped into the role of CEO of the Luksic Group (that their Croatian/Bolivian father had founded) and several of its related companies, notably Quinenco S.A., the holding company for the family’s non-mining investments. Andronico decided to concentrate on consolidation of the group and on building strong positions for the new acquisitions.

Andronico is also CEO of Compañía Cervecerías Unidas S.A. and its subsidiary companies CCU Chile, CCU Argentina and ECUSA, vice chairman of Compania Sud Americana de Vapores S.A. (CAV), of Banco de Chile and a member of the board of directors of Madeco S.A. (renamed Invexans), and Sociedad de Fomento Fabril (SOFOFA). He is member of the International Advisory Council of Barrick Gold, the Brookings Institution, the Panama Canal Authority, the Chairman’s International Council of the Council of the Americas, International Advisory Council of the President, board member of the Chilean Pacific Foundation and is a member of the Latin American Council of Nature Conservancy.  

Andrónico Luksic is also a member of the Boards of Antofagasta plc and Antofagasta Minerals.

The Luksic family is one of the richest families in the world. The founder’s second wife is worth $20 billion, At one time she was the 33rd richest person in the world.

Barrick Gold Corporation is the largest gold mining company in the world, with its headquarters in Toronto, Ontario.

MINNESOTA From WESTERN VALUES PROJECT: A Report on Possible Instances of Corruption at Ryan Zinke’s Interior Department

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MINNESOTA
From WESTERN VALUES PROJECT

A Report on Possible Instances of Corruption at Ryan Zinke’s Interior Department

pages 3 and 4

Ivanka Trump/ Jared Kushner and Twin Metals Principal Deputy Solicitor of the Interior Department Daniel Jorjani issued a legal decision allowing Twin Metals Minnesota to renew mining leases for their copper and nickel mining operation near Minnesota’s Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Twin Metals is a subsidiary of Antofagasta PLC, a Chilean mining company that coincidentally is owned by the family of Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump’s landlord.

In December 2016, the Obama administration decided not to renew leases “for a copper and nickel mining operation on the border of Minnesota’s Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness,” “while federal officials launched a formal review of the operation’s environmental Page 4 of 23 impact.” Obama administration “Interior officials expressed concern that any potential spill from nearby mining could cause ‘serious and irreplaceable harm’” to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, which is “the only large lake-land wilderness in the National Wilderness Preservation System.” [Juliet Eilperin, “Trump administration renews mining leases near Minnesota wilderness, reversing Obama,” Washington Post, 12/23/17]

The company applying to renew the leases was Twin Metals Minnesota, a “a subsidiary of the Chilean mining giant Antofagasta PLC.” Antofagasta belongs “to the family of billionaire Andrónico Luksic, who rents a home to Ivanka Trump and her husband, Jared Kushner, in Washington.” [Juliet Eilperin, “Trump administration renews mining leases near Minnesota wilderness, reversing Obama,” Washington Post, 12/23/17]

Daniel Jorjani, on December 22, 2017, issued a legal decision allowing Twin Metals Minnesota to renew the leases. “Jorjani’s decision came after a concerted lobbying effort by Twin Metals and its parent company.” In 2017, Jorjani met with Antofagasta and the lobbying firm that represents Twin Metals. [Jimmy Tobias, “Meet the Former Koch Adviser Slashing Conservation Safeguards at the Department of the Interior,” Pacific Standard, 01/10/18]

http://westernvaluesproject.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/Report-on-Possible-Instances-of-Corruption-in-Zinkes-Interior-Department-1-Year-Anniversary.pdf

Northern Minnesota and the PolyMet Project: PolyMet’s Tailings “Pond” Could Someday Create a Dead St. Louis River and a Dying Lake Superior

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new-logo25kohlsGary G. Kohls, MD, 12-14-15

 “Immediately below are links to dramatic photos and videos that have been readily available to the US government and American news agencies, but which were not reported, published or shown, to my knowledge, on the evening news of either local or regional corporate media outlets.”

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Is That an Acceptable Risk to Take?

ALL tailings “ponds” are a problem. If they don’t breach and spill massive amounts of toxic sludge into the environment like at Mount Polley, they leach that contamination slowly, poisoning the waters and lands around them.”

In the December 23rd edition of the Duluth (Minnesota, USA) News-Tribune, a staff writer, using the byline of “News Tribune”, wrote a Local News article with the title “EPA signals its support for final PolyMet review”

The article ended with this (intentionally?) deceptive and woefully insufficient sentence: “Critics say the project is likely to taint downstream waters with acidic runoff”.

In this commentary article I will attempt to correct the notion that “acidic runoff” is the major reason for the widespread opposition to PolyMet’s proposed copper/nickel mining project (which is adjacent to the pristine Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness). PolyMet, it should be mentioned, is a total novice when it comes to operating copper/nickel mines. More

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