BARAGA - The Keweenaw Bay Indian Community will be sponsoring a two-day tribal mining forum this weekend to educate the community on mining to increase awareness of its historical and contemporary impacts within the Lake Superior basin and Ojibwa-ceded territory.
The free mining forum, sponsored by the KBIC Mining Outreach & Education Initiative, will take place at the Niiwin Akeaa Center (Ojibwa Community College) Gymnasium from 1 to 8 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday, and is open to the public.
"An informed community is more equipped to help protect the environment and participate in public decision-making opportunities," said Jessica Koski, KBIC mining technical assistant. "Anyone who is curious or concerned to learn about local mining interests should come to this event to learn.
"We're targeting mostly the local tribal members, but we all live in the same area, breathe the same air. ... We just want to share information," Koski added.
Friday's featured events include a 1:30 p.m. keynote presentation by Mike Wiggins Jr., chairman of the Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa; a 2:30 p.m. presentation entitled "Lessons from the Crandon Mine" by Tina VanZile, director of the Mole Lake Sokaogon Chippewa Community Environmental Department; a 3:30 p.m. "Historical Environmental Impacts on Mining in the Lake Superior Basin" presentation by Mike Ripley, environmental coordinator of the Chippewa-Ottawa Resource Authority and a 4:15 p.m. "Sand Point Stamp Sands Restoration Project" update by Pamela Nankervis, KBIC wildlife biologist.
Saturday's events will kick off with an 8:30 a.m. light breakfast catered by the Hilltop Restaurant. At 9:15 a.m., the Great Lakes Indian Fish & Wildlife Commission will give a "Lake Superior Basin Mining Overview," followed by a "U.P. Mining Updates and Issues" presentation by Charles Brumleve, KBIC environmental mining specialist.
Student and community presentations will be held at 11 a.m. prior to a noon lunch catered by Larry's Market. Afternoon events include a "Sulfide Mining Policy & Regulation" presentation by Michelle Halley, attorney with the National Wildlife Federation, a "Tribal Natural Resources Damages" presentation by Mark Barush from the U.S. Department of Interior and an "Implications to Treaty Rights" presentation by George Newago and Brian Goodwin of the Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa.
For more information, contact Koski at 524-5757, extension 25, or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.