Division of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says Permit for the Rosemont Mine should be Denied

JAGUAR by cuatrok77. CC BY-NC-SA 2.0
JAGUAR by cuatrok77. CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

In February of this year, trail camera footage of Arizona’s only known jaguar made waves among U.S. news outlets. Many Americans were shocked to learn that a jaguar, known as El Jefe, was roaming the desert Southwest. They were equally surprised to learn that a foreign mining company (Hudbay Minerals Inc.) was planning to build a massive copper mine within El Jefe’s territory: which includes federally designated critical habitat for jaguars (Panthera onca). But the Los Angeles regional office of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has just made the mine harder to install.

According to this article, which was included in an email from the Center for Biological Diversity, the Corps’ LA division has recommended a federal Clean Water Act permit be denied for the Rosemont Mine. Hudbay’s planned construction activities could have significant effects on the area’s water sources, which is a problem considering that water tends to be scarce in arid landscapes. Hudbay has proposed to mitigate the damage to local water courses, but the recent recommendation suggests that the Corps’ LA office is not satisfied with their plans. However, this is far from a done deal.

The recommendation to deny the permit has been sent to the U.S. Army Corps’ San Fransisco division, which will make the final ruling. Should they deny the permit, Hudbay Minerals can appeal for a review. If they grant the permit, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has the power to veto the decision. Luckily the EPA has been critical of the Rosemont Mine since its proposal.

So while this issue is far from over, it is encouraging to see that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is taking the Rosemont Mine’s potential impacts on water sources seriously. The recent recommendation makes it more likely that the U.S. government will not allow the jaguar critical habitat in Arizona to be defiled by the Rosemont Mine.

For more information, click here to read the original article from Tony Davis of the Arizona Daily Star

6 Thoughts

  1. Continuing the conversation from my recent post, I now fully get your point; serious impact on water sources, if the copper mining plans go ahead. It’s always sad when environment is compromised in order to earn revenue. I seriously hope the ruling is for the preservation of Jaguars’ living spaces. Brilliant work you do bringing this issues to the fore.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Khaya! This mine would be all kinds of bad. It might hamper jaguars’ eventual recovery in the US, it would damage water sources in an area where water is already scarce, and it would technically be illegal; since it would be in a federally protected landscape. Unfortunately governments have a habit of not following their own laws when there’s money to be made, which is why I’m happy that in this case the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is taking the issue seriously.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Josh,

        I learned the impact of polluting water years ago when was heavy into fly fishing. Walmart had no respect at all in these matters. The runoff from their parking lots would make its way into streams and kill off certain insects which were the trouts main food source. In return the native trout population declined. If you can trace is back that far, the impact on other animals and man himself is inevitable. Great job bringing this subject to light.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Thanks Scot, it’s great to see you here! Polluting water always has negative consequences, many of which may not show up right away. I imagine that the effects of water pollution from the proposed mine would also be exacerbated due to the fact that it would be in an area where water is already scarce.


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