As you may, or may not know, a Canadian company called Green Light Metals has applied for a drilling permit in eastern Marathon County.
Water is one of the most important things in our lives. Plans were recently announced to commence a sulfuric acid mineral exploration drilling project to evaluate if an open-pit gold mine will be constructed. Citizens from the region are very concerned that groundwater will be placed in jeopardy of contamination. Without access to clean drinking water, many aspects of everyday life will become burdensome and unhealthy. Every resident in Marathon County gets their drinking water from the same saturated groundwater aquifer that the drill holes pass through.
The likelihood of further PFAS contamination in Wisconsin just increased. Extracting minerals is proving to be one of the major contributors to PFAS contamination all over the world. PFAS are present in the multitude of chemicals used at mining sites starting immediately during the drilling phase. Recent reports by Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR), the Norwegian Environmental Agency and MDPI Toxics 2022 confirm the drilling fluids, surfactants and foaming agents used in the earliest stages of these projects begin the PFAS exposure cycle.
While this project is below the Dells of Eau Claire, it still remains very dangerous to the marshy land in the area of the drilling, as well as the Plover and Eau Claire rivers. The Eau Claire River leads right through the Village of Weston and ultimately to Lake Wausau and the Wisconsin River.
Do we really need any more problems with PFAS in our area? The time to act on this is now.
Nancy Tabaka Stencil of Rib Mountain
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