Skip to comments.EPA: Alaska mine project could hurt salmon streams
Posted on 04/26/2013 8:07:58 PM PDT by oxcart
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) -- Build-out of a large-scale mine near the headwaters of a world-class salmon fishery in Alaska could wipe out as many as 90 miles of streams and alter stream flows, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said in a revised assessment released Friday.
The report said mining activity would claim at least 24 miles of streams in the Bristol Bay region, based on the scenarios evaluated, with the loss of wetlands ranging from 1,200 to 4,800 acres.
The EPA focused on the Pebble deposit and took into account information related to the proposed Pebble Mine but also noted the potential for multiple mines in the region, given the resource base, which it said would lead to further elimination or blocking of streams and wetland losses.
Pebble Partnership CEO John Shively said the review was unnecessary, flawed and "consistent with the demands of those who want to deny the Pebble Partnership the right to submit a permit application."
The Alaska Department of Law also issued a statement.
"We believe the assessment is premature, as well as any action EPA might take based upon it," the state agency said. "Any consideration of impacts should be made within the context of an actual proposal and a Clean Water Act Section 404 permit application."
The Pebble Partnership has called the mine deposit one of the largest of its kind in the world, with the potential of producing 80.6 billion pounds of copper, 107.4 million ounces of gold and 5.6 billion pounds of molybdenum over decades.
(Excerpt) Read more at hosted.ap.org ...
When are the sequester furloughs going to hit the maggots down at the EPA?
“Salmon could be wiped out!”
And, “Pigs could fly!”
EPA is very worried about flying pigs because of the possibility difficulty of fitting Depends on those flying porkers before each one is cleared for takeoff.
Good grief! That must be what, about half of Alaska?
The Bristol Bay salmon run actually could be wiped out. This is one time I’m siding with the tree huggers. The mine will generate several million gallons of basically battery acid. This toxic crap will be in holding ponds FOREVER. When the ponds leak, and they will, it will run into the rivers. Everyone here that is blasting the EPA for this please research this first.
Good grief! That must be what, about half of Alaska?
Area of Alaska: 663,268 square miles
Also, why do we treat these corporations as if they have commited a crime? Isn't it normal to wait for a violation before convicting anyone?
There should be incentives for preventing disasters and SERIOUS consequences for violations.
Usually, outsiders get all the benefits from any development anyway; so local Whites & Indians don't want it.
Florida phosphate mines have had some large holding pond failures, and resultant fish kills. Rivers recove. Disasters have happened and species survive (usually).
I suggest more concern for the “American experiment in self government” as Paul Johnson said. If this experiment fails, “there will be disorder throughout the world”.
I took the liberty of wondering what percentage of Alaska was going to be holding pond. The answer has to be expressed in exponential notation, such as: 2.826911595312905e-6.
No joke, from I hear, most the people that live out that way are against it, regardless of politics. It's kind of like building a nuclear waste site in your back yard that will never go away.
Sometimes, no matter how much money can be made, the down side might be just too big of a chance to take. There are new open pit gold mines all over Alaska, not like Alaskans are a bunch of greenies. This one is just an accident waiting to happen many Alaskans believe.
A very rich white guy, Bob Gillam has a monster lodge out by where the digs will be - and he has been pouring a ton of money into any anti-Pebble effort - talk about astroturfing.
Photos of this guys lodge can be found at
The Red Dog mine, which is zinc, has water treatment to remove the acidic residue from the mine, restoring a salmon stream that had been poisoned by natural seepage from the unmined ore body.
It is complicated, but it made into a political football by a rich guy that is a classic NIMBY.
Thanks for trying, but most here think food grows in grocery stores and salmon are something rich people eat. Many have not been out of their town or city, and a few not out of their parents’ basement.
Any attempt to disturb their consensus reality continually meets with failure and a collective sigh of boredom.
Trying to convince them just how delicate the balance is for Bay salmon is next to impossible.
They often would take mine products over food any day. the formulae here is mine products equals money, food equals grocery store.
Hope you can keep beating back this project.
I'm sure all the politicals have their vested interests, but the locals are pretty much all against this mine and shouldn't they control their own piece of Alaska? I've been on FR since 1996, never vote for dems; but I've also lived around enough Indians here in rural Alaska that I realize we have to respect where we call home; or it all goes to heck quick. The local Indians have a saying: This is our land and the Land and River provides. They really see the world in those terms, always have. Is it right for an outsider who has never been in that country and will never come into that country to dictate a disaster on the people and their connection to the land & river over profits. My better judgment tells me not; I live along the Yukon, put a fish net in every July, shoot a moose and a few caribou every August.