Twin Pines Minerals has withdrawn its application to mine heavy minerals on 2,400 acres of land near the southern border of the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge.

The company filed notice with the Army Corps of Engineers, saying it will reduce the size of the permit area before resubmitting its application.

It is not unusual for a company to withdraw an application to modify plans, Corps officials said.

The proposal to mine titanium and other heavy metals near the world-famous swamp has attracted widespread opposition by environmental groups who say there are too many uncertainties about mining to risk to potential impacts to the swamp’s unique hydrology.

Christian Hunt, Southeast program representative for Defenders of Wildlife, questioned the motivation for Twin Pines’ application withdrawal.

“Twin Pines withdrew its application for one reason: The company was told their project would need an environmental impact statement and therefore a thorough scientific review,” he said. “Transparency is the last thing this company wants.”

A majority of elected officials in Charlton County have expressed support for the project and the estimated 400 jobs it could bring to the community.

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