The Arizona Water Quality Appeals Board (WQAB) has dismissed an appeal by opponents of the Florence Copper Project. The March 6, 2017 ruling from the WQAB upholds Florence Copper’s Significant Amendment issued by the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) last year.
The Town of Florence, Southwest Value Partners, and Pulte Homes had filed a Notice of Appeal of the Significant Amendment to the Temporary Individual Aquifer Protection Permit (APP) No. 101630 P-106360 issued by ADEQ to Florence Copper on Aug. 3, 2016.
“Our project has multiple safeguards in place to protect the environment, and it was evident that the Water Quality Appeals Board understood that both the environment and public health would be protected by this permit,” said Dan Johnson, vice president and general manager of Florence Copper. “This is perhaps the most robust permit ever issued by ADEQ. It is gratifying that the Water Quality Appeals Board recognizes the appropriate safety and security built into this permit, and we are proud that our commitment to use the absolute best technology for in-situ copper recovery has been validated and upheld.”
Having a final, valid APP issued by ADEQ and upheld by the WQAB brings the project a critical step closer to operation of the proposed Production Test Facility for in-situ copper recovery. The project also requires an Underground Injection Control permit (UIC) for its injection wells. The UIC issued to Florence Copper by the Environmental Protection Agency on Dec. 20, 2016 is also being challenged by the Town of Florence and Southwest Value Partners. Florence Copper has every confidence that this appeal will also be dismissed due to the thorough regulatory review undertaken by EPA. The appeals process for the UIC must be finalized before operations can commence.
About Florence Copper
Florence Copper Inc. is proposing to develop an in-situ copper recovery project in Florence, Arizona. Not a mine in the traditional sense, Florence Copper will use a water-based solution to dissolve and recover copper minerals from a deposit more than 400 feet below ground. The project, which is in the final stage of permitting an initial test facility, offers a unique opportunity to generate economic benefit while at the same time protecting important resources. More information about the project is available at www.florencecopper.com.