Feb 292012

By Teri Walker —

American West Potash is hosting a series of public meetings in Holbrook, beginning in March, to provide progress reports on mine development and the company’s upcoming permitting process, and to discuss anticipated impacts to the local area.

The first meeting, scheduled for Tuesday, March 20, will provide an overview of the company’s potash project. The second meeting, to be held Tuesday, April 24, will focus on the environmental aspects of potash mining; and the third meeting, slated on Tuesday, May 22, will discuss economics.

“Even though each of the sessions have themes, we’ll be taking all questions on any subjects at every meeting,” said Pat Avery, president and CEO of American West.

All three meetings will run from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. and will be held in the Nizhoni Center, Room 143, of the Painted Desert Campus of Northland Pioneer College, located at 2251 E. Navajo Blvd.

American West Potash is one of three companies pursuing potash mining in the Holbrook Basin. Of the three, American West’s plans are most advanced. Avery has said his company could begin mining operations as early as 2014.

The main processing location for the firm is planned for a location east of Petrified Forest National Park in Apache County.

“We’re working to get information out there,” said Avery. “We want to be proactive on educating the area about our project, as well as hear and understand concerns. We’re grateful to the Little Colorado River Plateau RC&D for facilitating these sessions. We plan to hold a number of forums with other organizations, as well, to help get our message out and reach as many people as possible.”

For more information about the meetings, contact the Little Colorado River Plateau Resource Conservation & Development Area at (928) 524-2912 or send an e-mail to info@littlecolorado.net.