BEF FORUM September 28th 2019

Bradford Environmental Forum a Huge Success

By Jim Tatum

Thanks to the hard work by Carol Mosley, Kate Ellison and Paul Still, there was standing room only at the Sustainable Living Center at Hampton for the Bradford Environmental Forum on Sept. 28 in Hampton.  Attendees came from as far away as Ona, a three and a half hour drive, and St. Petersburg.

The mine was the topic of discussion, with a history of the HPS  company and its bid for a mine permit among the issues.  Dennis Price gave an interesting rundown on mining methods and the Master Mining Plan, changed and revised several times.   Carol Mosley recounted the questionable protocol by the Bradford County legal staff, and Paul Still spoke on Chemours’ sand mine application which may come before the county commission before the HPS permit; Rachel Curran from Center for Biological Diversity spoke on permitting requirements and Alachua County Commissioner Hutch Hutchinson informed the crowd as to Alachua County’s commitment to assisting in the fight against HPS, which is not inconsiderable.

The Bradford consultant, Onsite Environmental Consultants, is more than a year late on their report to the county.  We know there are still issues with the Master Mining Plan, as divulged by the latest of many versions recently released by HPSII.

Some of these issues are: it fails to document the success of the new highly-touted method of removing clay from process water. It fails to document that wetlands can be restored.

The MMP cannot be fully developed until HPSII has obtained all permits required because the permits will define the mining operation. Plus: there may be more issues we will not divulge until we are in a legal situation.