A chief supporter of a mining project in Iron and Ashland counties is calling on his federal colleagues to investigate Environmental Protection Agency actions in Wisconsin.
State Senator Tom Tiffany of Hazelhurst reacted to a report showing the Odanah wastewater treatment plant has failed to comply with the federal Clean Water Act. The plant serves the Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, strong opponents of the proposed Penokee Hills iron ore mine.
Tiffany asked Wisconsin's Congressional delegation to look into the practices of the EPA. A comment period ended Monday on a proposed 5-year permit extension for the Odanah treatment facility. Tiffany says reports indicated e-coli levels in wastewater discharges from the plant exceeded allowable levels or no report was filed...
"....what the New York Times called on of the greatest polluters in the state of Wisconsin, and yet the EPA is issuing them another permit for five years. I'm not so critical of the Odanah wastewater treatment plant that's clearly out of compliance. My criticism is of the EPA and their not doing their job..."
Tiffany wants state Congressional representatives to act...
".....and I believe our Congressional representatives should look into what the EPA is doing there..."
During the recent legislative debate over changing laws to enable the Iron and Ashland counties' mine, the tribe said the runoff from the mine would severely damage the Bad River watershed.
A call to Bad River tribal chair Mike Wiggins was not returned by the time of this posting.