A proposed mine next to the Menominee River in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula has a community up in arms.
Gold Resource Corp. wants to establish an open-pit and underground mine called the “Back Forty" on the riverbank about 65 miles north of Green Bay, Wisconsin.
A different company, Aquila Resources Inc., spent 20 years and $100 million dollars trying to start up the mine, but failed. It sold out to Gold Resource Corp. at a bargain price in December of 2021.
Now the new owner is attempting to resurrect the project.
Mine opponents say it would threaten a world-class sport fishery and spawning ground for lake sturgeon, endanger the area's water aquifers, introduce air, noise and light pollution into an unspoiled corner of the Upper Peninsula, encroach on cultural sites of vital importance to the Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin, and endanger the area’s multi-million dollar tourism industry by despoiling the natural environment. For the past several years, they’ve mounted a grass-roots campaign to stop the mine, working in collaboration with the Menominee Tribe – meeting, marching and calling on public officials to oppose the project.
This is their story.
A thirty-minute version of the film "Back Forty: A Clash of Values" screened at the Freeland Film Festival on June 16, 2018.