ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency has signed off the three final state permits sought by the developers of the planned PolyMet copper-nickel mine in northeastern Minnesota.

The agency Thursday announced its approval of the air and water quality permits for the project and a certification of the company’s plan to mitigate the mine’s impact on wetlands. The only remaining federal permit is a wetlands permit from the Army Corps of Engineers.

The Department of Natural Resources last month granted PolyMet the key permit for the project, a permit to mine.

PolyMet would be the state’s first copper-nickel mine. Critics of the open-pit mine near Babbitt cite the risks of acid mine drainage and dam safety concerns. Polymet says it can operate without harming the environment while providing hundreds of jobs.

(© Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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