Southeast tribal groups met with officials from the Department of State and the Environmental Protection Agency last week in Juneau and Ketchikan to discuss ongoing issues with Canadian mining projects on Southeast Alaska watersheds.

The Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska called for the meetings to address concerns over Canadian mines diverting potentially-toxic water to Southeast Alaska rivers. So-called “transboundary” mines are proposed on the Stikine, Taku, Alsek and Unuk River watersheds.

“What we’re trying to do is elevate our concerns and make sure they’re heard at the appropriate levels,” Central Council president Richard Peterson said in a Tuesday phone interview with the Empire. “We’re not against mining, what we’re concerned about are the mining practices that are proposed. ... We’re concerned that all measures are taken and we want to ensure that our voices are heard.”

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