All of the water on the earth is important and is precious for one reason or another but to people like me and the Friends of the Boundary Waters the letters BWCA are synonymous with Precious Waters. There aren’t many lakes in the world I would dare drink from while swimming in but I confess I do so when I’m in Minnesota’s canoe country. I don’t boil my water before drinking and I never use those little iodine tablets so believe me when I say the Boundary Waters are precious to me.
There is a controversy going on in Minnesota right now, I’m sure more than one, but the one that is most relevant to me is the one regarding sulfide mining not far from the BWCA. I have read about the economic benefits this mining would bring to an economically depressed area. I care about the people who live in these communities and who could possibly prosper for a few years if mining were allowed. I also care about the long term effects mining would have not only the communities but also on the environment.
The Friends of the Boundary Waters are not always my friends in spite of their nice name. I am aware of their ability to twist things around and of how deep their pockets are. It is a board run organization with frequent turnover and multiple missions depending upon who’s on board. On some issues they have told partial truths and made some lives miserable but I think they are looking out for the best interest of everyone when it comes to sulfide mining in Northern Minnesota.
They have a web page set up regarding this topic named Precious Waters. They have produced a scary film documenting effects of sulfide mining in other areas. I was able to watch this film online while in Grand Marais the other day and it is worth the watch. I would recommend you take the time to view this film, read their information, find other information and then make your own decision about sulfide mining near the BWCA. Then, if you feel compelled to do so, make a stand and let the right people know what you think. Just keep in mind I not only want my children to grow up drinking water straight from the lakes in the Boundary Waters but also their children.