The DNR has announced a Supplemental EIS for the Essar Steel project (f/k/a MSI).


March 25, 2010 from 5:30 – 7:30 pm

Nashwauk-Keewatin High School

400 2nd Street

Nashwauk, MN, 55769

Notice published 3/22 for a meeting on 3/25?

CLICK HERE for the DNR’s page for the MSI EIS.

Here’s the document that is open for comments until April 21, 2010:

Essar – SEIS Preparation Notice

From the original MSI proposal, here’s the chart of Potential To Emit from the Air Permit:

MSI Air Permit – Potential to Emit Chart

So for a 50% increase, multiply those numbers in the Potential to Emit Chart by 150%.  Take a look at those numbers and ask if that’s what you’d like in your lungs and fish.

In light of the changes proposed, a few issues:

* Does Essar now or anytime during the term covered by the supplemental EIS now being considered, and the term of the air permit currently issued, intend to use any amount of coal or metallurgical coke in any part of the mining, taconite or steel production processes or for energy at the Essar Steel Minnesota, LLC Nashwauk area facility, mine(s) or waste disposal and tailings sites.

* How many tons per day of coal/coke are projected be required for the facility during full operation in July, 2013, July, 2018, and July, 2023.”

* How many peak and average megawatts of electricity are now projected to be required for the facility in each year of operation, and specifically during peak operation in July, 2013, July, 2018, and July, 2023.

* How many peak and average million cubic feet per hour of natural gas are now projected to be required for the facility during full operation in July, 2013, July, 2018, and July, 2023.

* When will MPCA put air permit amendment out for review and comment?

And now for the Essar Supplemental EIS:

CLICK HERE for the DNR’s Supplemental EIS for Essar page.

Here’s their announcement from the March 22, 2010  EQB Monitor:



DNR will prepare a Supplemental EIS on a proposal by Essar Steel Minnesota to increase the production capacity of the Nashwauk facility’s crusher, concentrator, and taconite pellet plant from 4.1 million tons per year (mtpy) to 6.5 mtpy. This will require the addition of a crusher/concentrator line, and the installation of a larger pellet furnace, to the project evaluated in the original Minnesota Steel Project EIS.

Page 4 EQB Monitor Vol. 34, No. 6
Publication Date: March 22, 2010

The SEIS is designated to deal only with impacts, alternatives, and mitigation that are no longer adequately examined in the original EIS due to the changes in the project, information, or circumstances.

The DNR proposes that the following alternatives, impacts, and issues will be examined as part of the SEIS.

Alternatives: The SEIS will address four alternatives for the increased production in taconite pellets: 1) the Proposed Alternative (Increase taconite pellet production from 4.1 mtpy to 6.5 mtpy), which was not addressed in the original EIS; 2) the No-Action Alternative, which is the original “Build or Proposed Project” Alternative evaluated in the Minnesota Steel EIS; 3) a re-evaluation of best available control technology (BACT) for criteria pollutants whose emission are estimated to increase in amounts greater than the significant increase thresholds under 40 CFR Part 52, for any proposed changes to the BACT identified in the original EIS; and 4) air emissions control technology alternatives for mercury.

Impacts and Issues: surface water quantity and quality; wild rice; solid waste generation; air quality; contribution to global greenhouse emissions; mercury; cumulative air quality: Class I PSD Pollutants, Class I Acid Deposition and Ecosystem Acidification, and Class I Visibility Impairment; cumulative mercury; cumulative effects – climate change; and socioeconomics.

Special Studies or Research: updated mine plan; updated water quantity and water quality balance; wild rice; solid wastes generation estimates and disposal options; air emissions inventory; BACT evaluation for air emissions; Class I air quality analysis; Class II air quality analysis; mercury mass balance and control technology assessment; human health screening level risk assessment; screening level ecological risk assessment; greenhouse gas emissions inventory; cumulative effects on Class I air quality – PSD pollutants; cumulative effects on Class I air quality – acid deposition and ecosystem acidification; cumulative effects on Class I air quality – visibility impairment; cumulative health risk screening assessment; cumulative mercury; cumulative effects on climate change; socioeconomic effects.

The DNR will accept written comments on the Preparation Notice during a 21-day period beginning March 22, 2010. Comments must be received by 4:30 PM on April 12, 2010. Comments may be emailed to with “Essar Steel” in the subject line.   If using the email address, please include a name and mailing address so that it can be added to the mailing list.

A public informational meeting will be held on March 25, 2010 at the Nashwauk-Keewatin High School, 400 2nd Street, Nashwauk, MN, 55769, from 5:30 – 7:30 PM.

A draft SEIS is tentatively expected to be released for public review between October to December, 2010. The contact person at the DNR is: Bill Johnson, Planning Director, 500 Lafayette Road, St. Paul, MN 55155; 651-259-5126;