Skip to comments.EPA Starts Process That Could Restrict Pebble Mine
Posted on 02/28/2014 8:48:24 PM PST by BenLurkin
EPA Administrator Gina ... McCarthy told reporters on a teleconference that EPA is initiating the process under the Clean Water Act to determine how it can best use its authorities "to protect Bristol Bay rivers, streams and lakes from the damage that will inevitably result from the construction, operation and long-term maintenance of a large-scale copper mine."
EPA has rarely used this specific authority, which it can exercise before a permit is applied for. The agency says it has only done so 29 times in the past, and in 13 of those cases the EPA decided to take steps to limit or prohibit activity.
A spokeswoman for Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell called the EPA action egregious and beyond federal overreach.
"The EPA has not only cut off public input and process, but has also unilaterally decided that they, not Alaskans, know what's best for our future," said Sharon Leighow by email. "The State is prepared to pursue all legal options to ensure Alaska's rights are protected."
Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, said EPA was continuing to move toward a "premature veto based on what it assumes may happen with this project. We already have undeniably grave problems with federal agencies blocking resource production on federal lands in Alaska. Now to see a federal agency overstep its authority and move prematurely to block even the consideration of a permit for potential activity on state lands is something I simply cannot accept."
(Excerpt) Read more at abcnews.go.com ...
If I were to wish the death of any organization, it would be the EPA. They have caused more damage than good and are the organization leading to the demise of the US as a world leader more than any other.
This is one of the few if any good things the EPA has done. This mine will destroy one of the greatest salmon habitat in the world. Before you start knee jerk reaction against this please look into it.
On “Alaska: The Last Frontier” (Netflix) one of the Kilchers wears a hat with a red circle and a line over “Pebble Mine”. Never knew what that meant.
EPA seems to have come to that conclusion -- but wouldn't it be a nice thing if the developers could at least get a "fair trial," before their project is executed?
Just tell the EPA that you are extracting lithium for electric car batteries...
Jan. 2017 - President Cruz
Sign Executive order overturning every EPA regulation enacted since Jan. 2009.
Then, every other EPA regulation not explicitly RE-AUTHORIZED, within the following 12 months, is officially overturned and off of the books.
You can't put a price on the value of the salmon to the people that live in Bristol Bay; they live off that watershed. 500-1000 jobs for 50 years against the richest fishery that remains. If a spill were to occur, the entire area would starve; at least now, they have their subsistence lifestyle which is way better than hunger.
If you ever lived rural, really lived off what the land and river provides; you would understand. Many of the same people fighting pebble are quite conservative but won't destroy their environment for promises of economic growth. The Indians will never permit Pebble to happen,just against their world view & cultural perspective.
Probably hard for urban conservative folks in lower 48 to understand; if you lived in rural Alaska, you would. Pebble could damage an area way more than oil development ever could and Alaskans know it. Political suicide to support it, even for a Republican.
McCarthy is just as fanatical a leftist as her two marxist predecessors, Carol Browner (under Clinton) and Lisa Jackson under Obama.
This woman scares me.
After seeing copper mines and their related watersheds in Arizona, New Mexico and Utah, it's pretty obvious that copper mining is not environmentally friendly.
If you want copper mining, you've pretty much got to be prepared to sacrifice the entire watershed. In that regard, some watersheds are worth sacrificing, some aren't.
I know it’s controversial.
I've been watching this Pebble controversy for over a dozen years. It's a losing cause, no matter how much gold is there. Reason is most Alaskans understand how critical it would be to a large portion of Alaska, in an extremely dangerous way. I get poll callers all the time asking my opinion about Pebble, many are shocked that so many AK REpubs are against it, no joke.
Actually many of the original financial investors have given up. Some Repub politicals are still searching for a way to move it forward, but it's already history with the Alaskan People. JUst a matter of time until everybody gives up and goes back to Canada, where the investors are from.
I have to agree. Pebble’s gold and copper can stay right where it is. The salmon are more valuable.
The EPA is late coming to the game. There has been numerous studies and in fact the mine owners have admitted that just the creation of the mine will indeed destroy a lot of the salmon habitat by removing streams. Add the fact that they will create tailing ponds which will hold thousands of tons of toxic waste forever. This area is prone to earthquakes and the release of this battery acid like crap will destroy whatever it comes into contact with.
I would suggest for anyone interested in this is to search for Pebble Mine on Youtube and watch a few of them. There are some treehugger videos but there are some good fact based ones as well.
Most of the copper mines in Arizona, New Mexico and Utah trace back to the first half of the 20th century -- when environmental concerns weren't paramount and there was a high demand for copper. They're a product of a different time.
Open pit mining of copper has a huge environmental impact, because it generally amounts to taking a mountain, turning it inside out and processing, in this case, 86 million tons of acid-soluble 0.7% ore to get 600,000 tons of copper (plus some other stuff).
Copper mining is an exercise in brute force, man over nature, so to speak.
I pass by the Lavender Pit every year on my way back from Spring training...and the logistical effort it represents never ceases to amaze me. Personally, I think it should be a National Monument...but the enviros would never go for that.
At any rate, I very much doubt we'll ever see another such venture in the USA (or, evidently, in Alaska).