Friday, February 26, 2016 at 6 p.m. in Jerry’s Gym (507 Maroon Avenue) the Crested Butte Town Council will hold a Special Town Council meeting with public discussion and possible approval of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) regarding the: (1) operation of the Water Treatment Plant (WTP) that treats contaminated mine water from the old Keystone Mine prior to discharging into Coal Creek above Crested Butte; and, (2) states that Freeport/Mt Emmons Mining Co. intends to dispose of the private lands and ore body, as well as the mining claims on federal land.

This meeting comes on the heels of Freeport McMoRan’s acquisition, through its subsidiary company the Mt. Emmons Mining Company (MEMC), from the previous owner, U.S. Energy (USE), all of USE’s properties and interests on and around Red Lady and the release of the MOU early last week.

HCCA will be asking the Town to approve the MOU.  We encourage you to don your best red to show solidarity for a protected watershed and mine-free Red Lady.  Want to provide on the record support as well?  Encourage the Town to approve the MOU for the following reasons: 

  • The MOU moves us closer than ever to ensuring Coal Creek water quality is protected and a permanently mine-free Red Lady.
  • The MOU provides us security for a minimum of two years that the WTP necessary to treat contaminated water from the Keystone Mine workings will continue to operate while we explore sustainable long-term solutions. This security removes the immediate threat of untreated and contaminated water from being released into Coal Creek.
  • Fully-funding the WTP operation for the next two years should allow sufficient time to explore sustainable long-term solutions that will protect Coal Creek water quality.
  • The MOU outlines a series of actions that will help ensure the protection of Coal Creek as well as continue the process of finding a permanent solution that would result in a mine-free Red Lady.
  • The MOU states that Freeport/MEMC intends to dispose of the private lands and ore body, as well as the mining claims on federal land―which would remove once and for all the threat of mining on Red Lady.

We’ll see you Friday in your best red and together show unified support for a long-term, sustainable, and protective solution for our watershed and Red Lady!

Read HCCA’s update from last week, the MOU, and the Town’s Executive Summary.