Letters to the Editor – Bradenton Times

Letters to the Editor
Bradenton Times
Saturday, Feb 11, 2017

Would mining activities preclude future normal uses of mined out lands? This is question #6 from the Manatee County staff report, Standards for Master Mining Approval, page 13.

The answer is much more than staff reports. Not only building, but agriculture on reclaimed land would be extremely limited. Is the burden of proof not on the applicant? The market has not demonstrated that agriculture is a viable use of reclaimed mine land.

Mosaic may have their small, intensely managed experiments with ag after mining, however, vast areas of western Polk County demonstrate no agriculture to speak of on reclaimed land. The only exception is a rare siting of a few cows on grazing land.

Go to Hardee County. In 2008, a “Mosaic Agreement” granted the county economic gurus 42 million dollars over a ten year period as compensation for the 11,000 acre South Fort Meade Extension mine. The county will tell you is for economic mitigation in the post-mining economy. This money hopes to start up industry, but the results have been questionable at best. Is this not an admission even by the industry itself that after mining and reclamation, lands will not support the former economy of agriculture.

One time, temporary use; permanent loss. Phosphate strip mining is only profitable for Mosaic. Commissioners, think ahead one hundred years. Vote for Manatee County. Vote no on phosphate mining.

Brooks Armstrong
Bone Valley resident

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