For generations, families have relied on the flourishing phosphate patches located in southeast Idaho to provide their ways of life. Today, women and men are continuing to carry on the legacy of phosphate mining while adapting to new and modern mining methods. For 100 years, phosphate mining has allowed Idahoans the ability to live, work, and raise their families in some of our state’s most beautiful country, all while responsibly providing a critical resource to the world. The next chapter in that story starts with Itafos Conda’s Husky 1/North Dry Ridge Project (H1/NDR).
With its more than 33 years of continuous operations, Itafos Conda has become an integral part of the social and economic structure of Caribou and Bear Lake Counties. From its dependable mining operation and fertilizer manufacturing facility to its high-paying jobs and charitable contributions, Itafos Conda is committed to supporting the people who call Idaho home. This critical partnership allows us to provide products that help meet the needs of local and regional farmers.
On December 23, 2020, the United States Bureau of Land Management (BLM) published what is known as the Notice of Intent for the proposed H1/NDR project. This initiated a year-long National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process where the proposed plans for the mine are thoroughly evaluated. One of the first steps in that process includes a public comment period requiring letters of support from people who want to see responsible phosphate mining continue in southeast Idaho.
By moving this project forward, Itafos Conda will continue to serve Idaho by providing an economic boost, creating and maintaining jobs, and extracting one of the world’s more critical natural resources, phosphate. Of course, minimizing the environmental impact on our lands is a top priority to many Idahoans. That is why Itafos Conda has committed to re-establishing waterways, using existing facilities and previously impacted areas, implementing stormwater controls, using cap and cover, and managing overburden. H1/NDR will allow the company to continue to provide high-paying jobs to as many as 300 employees and another 200 contractors. Those 500 workers alone make up roughly 15-percent of the Caribou County workforce, but Itafos’ contribution to the employment of Idaho workers goes far beyond those 500. Itafos Conda also relies on local suppliers to provide necessary materials, services, and supplies. It’s an annual effort that has a large economic impact to Idaho with $180 million going to the local economy, $155 million to the rest of Idaho, and an additional $32 million in taxes, fees, and royalties, for a total of $367 million annually back into the economy. If this project does not move forward, the consequences would be devastating.
Today we ask that you take a moment to write a quick e-mail of support for H1/NDR to the BLM. Time is of the essence as the public comment period closes on January 22, 2021. Your participation is critical to the success of this project and the success of hundreds of Idahoans who hope to continue their careers in or around their hometowns.
To write your letter of support, simply go to www.condagrowingidaho.com. There, you will find simple instructions to e-mail your comment.
It was 100 years ago that the first ore came out of the ground in southeast Idaho, and now we appreciate and celebrate the long winding journey of phosphate mining in the Gem State. Farmers across the nation depend on the fertilizer products from Itafos Conda to feed the world. That’s a responsibility we don’t take lightly and are eager to continue with the Husky 1/North Dry Ridge Project. It is all part of the century-long legacy of phosphate mining within the Gem State, and Itafos is privileged to ask you to be a part of it.