skip to content
Primary navigation

Minerals Management

mining dump truck

The state owns 3.5 million acres of school trust mineral rights, consisting of 2.5 million acres of unified surface and mineral estate and one million acres of severed mineral rights (where the state retained its rights to all minerals when selling the surface rights of a parcel of land).

In addition to iron ore/taconite mining, school trust minerals development and exploration include stockpiled iron ore extraction, non-ferrous (non-iron) metallic minerals (copper-nickel, gold, platinum group metals), industrial minerals (dimension stone, silica sand, diamonds), construction aggregates (sand and gravel), and peat mining .

DNR’s Division of Land & Minerals is responsible for managing school trust mineral resources, including negotiating and drafting of leases, conducting mineral lease sales, monitoring and verifying minerals removed from school trust lands, evaluating mineral potential for proposes land transactions, and collecting and accounting of revenues.

From 2013-2022, approximately 70% of annual gross revenue generated from school trust lands was from minerals management. Of that 70%, approximately 90% was from royalty payments from one company’s mining operation. Minerals account for approximately 80% of historic school trust revenues deposited into the Permanent School Fund.

back to top