The Michigan Potash and Salt Co. (MI Potash) in Evart, near Traverse City, announced today it has received all permits required to begin construction on its proposed $1 billion facility near Evart.
The final permit air permit modification necessary was approved by the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) this week following public comment in which the project received support from local elected officials building trades and labor, the agricultural community, and local farmers.
“We appreciate the diligence of EGLE and the engagement of our community,” says Jeff Kummer, president and COO of MI Potash. “It’s extremely important that we establish a domestic supply of potash for American farmers, while ensuring we’re good neighbors and stewards of the environment, this permit award is positive affirmation of these objectives.”
Potash is a potassium rich nutrient required for the growth of healthy food crops. It was added to the critical mineral list by the U.S. Department of the Interior in 2018, which declared it a vital commodity for the country’s economy and security.
In the United States, demand for potash remains at an all-time high, with potash prices having almost tripled in the past year. This has impacted farmers and everyone who buys groceries. The U.S. imports 96 percent of its potash demand, making farmers heavily reliant on foreign sources of supply.
The U.S. Potash Project will be the first large-scale domestic producer of potash in decades. It is estimated the project will create more than 300 union construction jobs over three years and 150 full-time operations positions indefinitely.
The project represents a $1 billion capital investment with a 150-plus year resource base — representing one of the largest union-supported economic development projects in the country.