The company proposing a copper mine in the Smith River watershed has cleared its first regulatory hurdle. The Montana Department of Environmental Quality has informed Tintina that its application for a permit to mine has met its completeness and compliance review. This triggers an environmental impact statement (EIS) for the Black Butte Copper Project — a long review process that includes public comment and public hearings.

This fight is far from over. As Executive Director of Montana Trout Unlimited said ““The completeness review is a small step in a long process before metals will be dug out near Sheep Creek, the tributary of the Smith.”

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