The Scandia City Council has approved an environmental study of a proposed gravel mine near the St. Croix River.
The mine would be an expansion of a long-disused gravel pit on a bluff above the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway.
The environmental study, conducted for the city of Scandia by a consultant, says the mine poses no risks of significant environmental harm.
Now that the city council has approved the study the Tiller Corporation, can apply to the city for a conditional use permit.
Tiller says it has changed its plans to respond to environmental concerns.
Critics say the review is superficial and inadequate. They include Vice President Walter Mondale, who was co-author of legislation that protected the St. Croix River as a national park.