Old mine to be re-purposed; hundreds of new jobs possible

FREDERICKTOWN, Mo. (KFVS) - An old mine in Fredericktown, Missouri being re-purposed could bring-in hundreds of new jobs to Madison County.

The announcement was made on Wednesday, July 31 at the Madison Mine/Anschutz Mine, also referred to as the Cobalt Mine.

According to the EPA’s task force, Superfund Redevelopment Initiative, there are plans to reopen the Missouri Cobalt Mine.

The EPA launched the SRI in 1999 with the goal of returning formerly contaminated lands to long-term sustainable and productive reuse.

In 2019, Missouri Cobalt, LLC, a company affiliated with MMI, built a mine tailings processing facility to recover metals from existing mine waste, creating 30 full-time jobs.

Once it is fully operational, officials said it would be the only primary cobalt mine in the United States.

It’s not clear when the mine would reopen, but its believed hundreds of jobs will be created when it does.

Missouri Representative Jason Smith, who attended the announcement, said this project could be just what this region of southeast Missouri needs.

"This was a dead zone. There was nothing here. Zero jobs in Madison County, Missouri. With the expectation of future growth, growth of several hundred jobs to maybe six hundred, " said Rep. Smith.

EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler also attended the announcement.

Wheeler said cobalt is a precious metal used in many electronics, such as smart phones, laptops and electric vehicles.

“It’s also used in medical devices,” said Wheeler. “It’s used by the Department of Defense for a number of different applications. So it’s a very important metal that we need to have our own domestic supply for national security issues and to keep prices low on important products for the American people.”

Christopher Holt