Written by Jen Finn
If there's one thing salesmen know, it's the abiding faith that if they say something over and over again, that it will become true (at least in terms of public perception). So it's no wonder that the Pebble Partnership has spent millions of dollars on advertising and lobbying to convince us that there is no plan to mine in Bristol Bay. Sadly, Alaska's own Governor Sean Parnell has bought in, repeating this same tired rhetoric just this week at the world-famous Boston Seafood Show which he attends to represent the state of Alaska and our seafood industry.
Let's be absolutely clear: there is both a mine plan and a permit application for water rights on the table. Publicly accessible information is out there to prove it, much of it just down the street from the Governor's house and office.
Visit the Alaska Department of Natural Resources website, where you can find plans filed by Northern Dynasty (Pebble Partnership) in which they depict massive dams and tailings impoundments. You see, state law requires a detailed project description in order to apply for water rights and receive a priority date. Since Alaska's system is based on a principal of "first in line first in right," the companies seeking to develop Pebble quickly applied for the rights to "use" water from Upper Talarik Creek and the South Fork of the Koktuli River — some of the most salmon rich headwaters of the Bristol Bay fisheries.
If that's not enough, look at the presentations ( northerndynastyminerals.com/ndm/Presentations.asp ) that the company shows to corporate investors. Slideshows are filled with braggadocio about the sheer magnitude and unprecedented size of the project. Check out filings made with the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC). The 2011 Wardrop Report — commissioned by these foreign mining companies — includes their own analysis about deposit estimates, mining methods, waste management and even a chapter called "mine planning." In a press release, Northern Dynasty called their mine plans "economically feasible and permittable." If the companies behind Pebble believe the Wardrop plans are factual, why shouldn't Alaskans and those responsible for upholding the nations Clean Water Act examine them as real mine plans?
For further insight just turn on your television. Slick advertisements intend to move public opinion in support of Pebble Partnership's plan to build the world's largest open-pit copper mine at the headwaters of the greatest wild salmon fishery on planet Earth. The magnitude of their ad campaign testifies to the size of their plans in Bristol Bay.
Read the full story at the Juneau Empire>>
National Fisherman Live: 3/10/15
In this episode, Online Editor Leslie Taylor talks with Mike McLouglin, vice president of Dunlop Industrial and Protective Footwear.
National Fisherman Live: 2/24/15
In this episode:
March date set for disaster aid dispersal
Oregon LNG project could disrupt fishing
NOAA tweaks gear marking requirement
N.C. launches first commercial/recreational dock
Spiny lobster traps limits not well received
NMFS announced two changes in regulations that apply to federal fishing permit holders starting Aug. 26.
First, they have eliminated the requirement for vessel owners to submit “did not fish” reports for the months or weeks when their vessel was not fishing.
Some of the restrictions for upgrading vessels listed on federal fishing permits have also been removed.Read more...
Alaskans will meet with British Columbia’s Minister of Energy and Mines, Bill Bennett, when he visits Juneau next week and will ask him to support an international review of mine developments in northwest British Columbia, upstream from Southeast Alaska along the Taku, Stikine and Unuk transboundary rivers.
Some Alaska fishing and environmental groups believe an international review is the best way to develop specific, binding commitments to ensure clean water, salmon, jobs and traditional and customary practices are not harmed by British Columbia mines and that adequate financial assurances are in place up front to cover long-term monitoring and compensation for damages.Read more...