21 February 2012 22:51 [Source: ICIS news]
HOUSTON (ICIS)--Mosaic has reached a settlement agreement that will allow the company to resume operations at its South Fort Meade mine in Florida, the US-based fertilizer producer said on Tuesday.
Under the terms of the deal, the Sierra Club, Manasota-88 and People for Protecting the Peace River would drop their challenge to the company's mining permit in exchange for certain commitments by Mosaic.
These commitments include the preservation of about 130 acres of land otherwise eligible to be mined by Mosaic.
Mosaic must make a donation to the Peaceful Horse Ranch in DeSoto county, the state of Florida or a non-profit organization for permanent conservation.
The company must also commit to certain mitigation, monitoring and site enhancements, as well as additional efforts to obtain permanent conservation easements along the Peace River.
The agreement is pending approval by the courts.
The South Fort Meade mine is one of the largest phosphate mines in the world, producing about 6m tonnes/year of the fertilizer. It represents a third of Mosaic's phosphate production, as well as 4% of the world's production.
Last year, a US district judge ordered Mosaic to stop all operations at the mine. At issue was Mosaic's permit from the US Army Corps of Engineers to expand the mine.
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