A host of water pollutants basis for 75 pages of lawsuit against the proposed Rosemont Mine

The $1.9 billion mine would create more than 400 permanent jobs at the open half-mile-deep pit, which will be more than a mile in diameter./ Kelly Presnell / Arizona Daily Star

By Tony Davis | Arizona Daily Star

Four environmental groups sued the U.S. Forest Service Monday, charging that its approval of the proposed Rosemont Mine violated 10 environmental laws and seeking to have the approval overturned.

The 75-page lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court, directly challenges the service’s statement in its June decision approving the mine that it won’t violate environmental laws.

The Forest Service has long stated that it can’t say “no” to the mine as long as it meets all applicable federal laws and regulations.

Coronado Forest Supervisor Kerwin Dewberry declined to comment on the suit Monday, saying the agency typically doesn’t comment on pending litigation except in formal legal responses.

The suit alleged that the mine would violate various water laws and standards, for instance, by reducing flows to Cienega Creek and its tributary Empire Gulch.

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