Lawsuit against Minnesota Department of Natural Resources dropped
An eight-month battle between the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and Cleveland-Cliffs has come to an end following Monday’s court order dismissing Cleveland-Cliffs’ claim in a second, but related, lawsuit against the DNR and its competitor Mesabi Metallics. Cleveland-Cliffs, an Ohio mining company, claimed that it—rather than its competitor Mesabi Metallics—should be given mining and water appropriation permits to a controversial piece of land in Nashwauk, Minnesota.
The lawsuits began after Mesabi’s efforts to revive Essar Steel, Minnesota’s $1.9 billion taconite project located in Nashwauk. Cliffs purchased a piece of land in Nashwauk, adjacent to the Essar Steel project, after Mesabi failed to meet a financing deadline. Cliffs then requested that the state transfer mining permits that it believes are related to the purchased parcel. However, the state denied the request. Cliffs then sued both the DNR and Mesabi.
In addition, Cliffs filed a separate but related lawsuit against both the DNR and Mesabi demanding water appropriation permits be reissued to Cliffs. It was the opinion in this case, issued Monday in favor of the DNR and Mesabi, stating that Cliffs did not have the right to demand the issuance of the water appropriation permits over Mesabi, which resulted in Cliffs filing to dismiss its initial lawsuit.
While the cases against the DNR have come to an end, the litigation is not completely over. Cliffs will continue to pursue legal action against Mesabi for trespassing and creating a nuisance on property owned exclusively by Cliffs.
Originally published at http://www.startribune.com/cleveland-cliffs-drops-lawsuit-against-minnesota-dnr/508711882/