- Associated Press - Tuesday, May 1, 2018

RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) - A Canadian company exploring for gold in western South Dakota has withdrawn a water permit request for a controversial drilling project.

Mineral Mountain Resources withdrew its request this week for a new temporary permit to use water from a creek near Rapid City, the Rapid City Journal reported . The company’s current permit for Rapid Creek is set to expire Tuesday.

Mineral Mountain Resources sent a letter to the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources, saying the company “has made alternative arrangements for a water supply.” Company officials didn’t offer details on the new arrangements as of Tuesday.

The Canada-based company drilled and plugged three holes while searching for gold near Rochford earlier this year. Workers pulled more than 460,000 gallons (1,740,000 liters) of water from Rapid Creek to lubricate its drill.

The project has drawn opposition from environmentalists and residents concerned about the potentially negative impact on the land. Some Native American tribes have also criticized the drilling as a desecration of the Black Hills, which holds spiritual significance to the tribes.

Three members of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe have an ongoing appeal in court against the company’s exploratory permit for the project.

Mineral Mountain is only permitted to explore for gold, not mine the area.


Information from: Rapid City Journal, http://www.rapidcityjournal.com

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