Mining Heritage Argument Challenged

February 10, 2013  by Rebecca Kemble

Governor Walker presented iron ore mining as viable job creation during the 2013 State of the State.

Governor Walker presented iron ore mining as a priority for job creation during the 2013 State of the State address. Photo by Leslie Amsterdam.

The O’Dovero-Flesia family farm lies in the shadow of the Penokee Hills in Ashland County, Wisconsin. Five generations have successfully farmed this land for 87 years.  Now a mountain top removal project proposed by Gogebic Taconite and a new law written to ease the way for its approval threatens the air, water and soil that is the basis for the family’s livelihood.

In a recent interview, two members of the fourth generation of the family talked about the importance of their agricultural heritage and wondered why the miner on the Wisconsin flag is being used as an argument by those who would blow up the hills a mile away from their home as a justification for destroying their way of life.

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