Early Wednesday afternoon, a fire broke out at the site of the Northern Metals recycling facility in North Minneapolis. The Minneapolis Fire Department is currently working to extinguish the fire, and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency is also on site.
In response, Senator Bobby Joe Champion (DFL-Minneapolis), Senator Kari Dziedzic (DFL-Minneapolis), Representative Fue Lee (DFL-Minneapolis), Representative Sydney Jordan (DFL-Minneapolis), and Representative Esther Agbaje (DFL-Minneapolis) released the following statement:
“We do not have a lot of information at this time, but we are closely monitoring the ongoing situation along with city officials and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA). This is now the third fire at a Northern Metals site in the last five years and they have a history of violations at this site that caused the state to order them to cease shredding operations. Due to that history, we are going to take every precaution necessary to protect our community.
We are strongly committed to environmental justice. This area has some of the highest asthma rates in the state and we do not think our constituents should have to endure any more air and noise pollution from this site. We will be following up with the MPCA to ensure the site is operating legally and the air quality in our area is safe. We will share more information with our neighbors as it becomes available.”