National Fisherman

A long-awaited federal report released Wednesday concludes that a large gold and copper mine in the Bristol Bay area poses significant risks to the region's thriving sockeye salmon runs and its people -- an assessment praised by environmental, fishing and Native groups as sound science and sharply criticized by the group trying to develop the proposed Pebble mine as rushed and flawed.
The Environmental Protection Agency has spent three years studying the potential impacts on salmon of a large, open pit mine in the Bristol Bay region, where half of the world's sockeye salmon are produced. The final report comes after two drafts, 1.1 million public comments and two reviews by an independent 12-member panel of experts.
Among EPA's findings, just building the mine would destroy between 24 to 94 miles of salmon-supporting streams and 1,300 to 5,350 acres of wetlands, ponds and lakes, depending on the mine's size.
"There are clear losses of habitat from the mine footprint and from the mining activities themselves," Dennis McLerran, administrator for EPA's Seattle-based region 10, said in an interview Wednesday. The lost habitat means "significant risks to fish and wildlife and the cultures that are there."
Read the full story at Anchorage Daily News>>

Inside the Industry

Abe Williams, who was elected to the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association board last spring, has been selected as the new president as of September.

Williams fishes the F/V Crimson Fury, and is president of Nuna Resources, a nonprofit that supports sustainable resource development in rural Alaska, including fighting for an international solution to issues raised by the proposed Pebble Mine project.


The Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi is teaming up with leading shark-tracking nonprofit Ocearch to build the most extensive shark-tagging program in the Gulf of Mexico region.

In October, Ocearch is bringing its unique research vessel, the M/V Ocearch, to the gulf for a multi-species study to generate previously unattainable data on critical shark species, including hammerhead, tiger and mako sharks.

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