Leading Swedish iron ore miner LKAB announced that it is already working to prepare a new environmental permit application for the entire Kiruna operation. It is not expected that the new application will be ready for submission within the coming year. A new public consultation with affected stakeholders and the public is an important part of preparation for the application. LKAB had entertained some hope that the Supreme Court would see the need to clarify the precedent.LKAB’s Senior Vice President Communications and Climate Niklas Johansson said “Unfortunately, the rejection was not entirely unexpected. We have taken this issue as far as possible in an effort to get an answer as to what is actually required during public consultations. We now know no more than we did when we submitted the previous application, which is extremely unfortunate.”He added “Now, unfortunately, the Land and Environment Court of Appeal ruling has set a precedent. It is very evident that this decision conflicts with the need and the political will on the part of the Government and Riksdag to make the permitting processes more efficient. Instead, it increases the uncertainty, posing a risk that the processes may be further prolonged. That we must now start all over again entails an enormous waste of resources for us and for society, resulting in no real benefit for the environment, the climate or individual stakeholders,” says Niklas Johansson.LKAB’s previous application for an environmental permit for operations in Kiruna was rejected. The application involved an increase in the rate of iron ore production from 30 to 37 million tonnes per year. A non-unanimous Land and Environment Court of Appeal ruled in June this year that LKAB, by failing to clearly and specifically invite stakeholders who are particularly affected by mining operations to engage in dialogue, did not meet the requirement to conduct a public consultation in 2017 prior to submission of the application.