Thu September 19, 2013
UW-Superior Poll: Majority Of Ashland, Iron County Residents Oppose Mine
A University of Wisconsin-Superior poll of Ashland and Iron county residents has found that most people are opposed to a proposed open pit mine.
The survey – the first to focus on the counties where the mine would be – was conducted this summer by UW-Superior economics professor Zamira Simkins. She says 62 percent “absolutely opposed” or “generally opposed” the mine, with 44 percent in the absolutely opposed category.
Simkins says out of nearly 10,000 households in Ashland and Iron counties, 200 were randomly selected for a phone survey and 102 answered the survey completely.
Because of the small sample size, the margin of error is 8 percent.
Simkins says they discovered most of the reasons against the mine outnumbered those for it. An “incredibly large amount of people” said that the mine would have a negative effect on things like transportation, outdoor recreation, and the environment.
The poll shows that 11 percent of residents fully support a mine and 14 percent generally support the mine, while 14 percent are neutral.
Simkins says people supported it because of the jobs it would create. “Most of the people felt there would be the positive, or the somewhat positive effect, on the economy – on the local business and the employment opportunities.”
Besides the 62 percent against the mine, Simkins says she was surprised that so many people say they are well-educated about the mine issue. 70 percent say they are following the controversy closely.
Those surveyed also noted the 66 percent of them would never work in the mine.
Economy and Business