Frank Ongaro was named executive director of Mining Minnesota in November 2006. In this position, Ongaro serves as chief spokesperson for the MiningMinnesota initiative, which supports sustainable and environmentally responsible critical and strategic metals mining development in Minnesota.
Mining — A New Era
Welcome! The MiningMinnesota initiative seeks to give Minnesotans the facts about critical and strategic metals mining efforts currently being proposed in our state. Northeastern Minnesota has long been the region’s mining epicenter. Historically, iron mining has provided the residents of northeastern Minnesota with long-term jobs, good wages, and stable communities in which to raise their families.
Critical and strategic metals mining offers a new direction for northeastern Minnesota. These mining operations will provide good-paying jobs, help stabilize our communities, and prevent “flight” to urban areas due to a lack of economic opportunity. A revitalized mining industry in the state will again bring hundreds of jobs to an area in need of an economic and social boost.
Modern mining practices have come a long way in the past 20 years. For example, the critical and strategic metals mining operation proposed for Hoyt Lakes will not involve a smelter, will have zero water discharge, and will line and cap the waste rock. The objective is to have as minimal an environmental impact as possible at any mining sites in Minnesota.
As a native Minnesotan and Iron Ranger, I – like most Minnesotans – appreciate all the amenities our beautiful state has to offer, such as the limitless opportunities for sports and recreation on our many lakes, hiking lush nature trails or watching a peaceful sunset from the cabin porch. And, I want nothing less for my grandchildren. In order to enjoy such pursuits, there must be a standard of environmental quality.
Minnesota’s strong environmental standards are among the most stringent in terms of allowing mining activity. MiningMinnesota’s pledge is to ensure responsible mining practices that meet or exceed these standards, as well as offer new economic opportunities for our neighbors in northeastern Minnesota.
I hope you will join us in our efforts. Please keep tuned to this site for updates and opportunities to make your voice heard. Thank you.