A 1,000 acre block of former Algoma Central Railway lands on Lake Superior’s Michipicoten Harbour was sold to a U.S. company— Superior Aggregates Company—that intends to strip the site of soil, vegetation, and timber, and then drill, blast and crush the coastal rock to within 65 metres of the shoreline. The privately-held block of land is nestled within 160 miles of Lake Superior shoreline protected by a National Park, three Provincial Parks and two Conservation Reserves. The resulting aggregate is destined for shipment by freighter to Michigan for use in highway construction.
Citizens Concerned for Michipicoten Bay (CCMB) are concerned that development may potentially threaten lake water quality, air quality, fish and wildlife habitat, and future potential use of the Bay as an enjoyment destination for adventure tourism. They have spearheaded efforts to educate area residents and decision makers about these concerns and engage citizens in public comment opportunities. Many residents and visitors to the Wawa-Michipicoten Bay area and CCMB are not convinced that several potentially serious environmental, economic, and social issues have been adequately addressed. As a result, CCMB has taken steps to legally challenge permitting decisions and what is allowable under local zoning. Currently, several unresolved issues brought up during the public comment period have been turned over to the Ontario Municipal Board for a hearing. CCMB intends to go to the Ontario Municipal Board Hearing to resolve their objections to the quarry proposal and to the municipal rezoning for the quarry property.