"A tribe and environmental groups challenged the DNR's decision to green-light the copper-nickel mine."
"Plans to build Minnesota’s first copper-nickel mine suffered a major setback Monday when the state Court of Appeals reversed three permits issued to PolyMet Mining Corp. and kicked them back to state regulators for additional review.
Chief Judge Edward Cleary said the the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) erred in not holding so-called contested case hearings on the permits to fully vet objections by environmental groups and the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa. In a decision released Monday, he ordered the DNR to hold such a hearing, which will take place before an independent administrative law judge.
In addition, Cleary said, the DNR should have placed a clear time limit on PolyMet’s all-important permit to mine. Although PolyMet says it intends to mine for 20 years, the permit is not entirely clear about the time frame."