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News release

May 30, 2024


Stephen Mikkelson, 218-316-3887,

MPCA seeks comment on U.S. Steel Keetac draft air permit for Keewatin mining facility

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) seeks public comment on a proposed air permit for the U.S. Steel Keetac mining facility in Keewatin, Minn. The draft permit includes the addition of new and more efficient control equipment, a replacement natural gas-fired emergency generator, updated performance test plans and provisions for the facility’s iron pellets project. 

The draft permit requires testing, monitoring, and recordkeeping for criteria pollutants. The two types of emissions from the facility include particulate-based emissions generated from the mining, hauling, crushing, processing, and handling of the ore and pellets as well as combustion emissions produced from the pellet furnace.

U.S. Steel Corp.'s Keetac facility in Keewatin produces taconite pellets for use at iron and steel mills. The facility mines and crushes ore, processes it into pellets, and fires the pellets into a furnace to harden them. 

The draft permit is open for public comment now through June 24. For more information on the permit and to sign up for updates on permitting, rulemaking and other actions related to mining in northeast Minnesota visit the MPCA’s Keetac web page.

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