Education and Civil Society
(ENS, 14 October 2009) -- The Natural Resources Defense Council is mounting a new campaign to save Alaska's Bristol Bay, the world's most productive salmon fishery, from the development of Pebble Mine in southwest Alaska, one of the largest gold and copper mines ever proposed. "There are few human activities as toxic as large-scale mining," said Joel Reynolds, senior attorney and director of NRDC's marine mammal protection project. "The Pebble Mine project could lead to widespread water contamination, which would destroy the salmon runs of the Bristol Bay watershed and thereby devastate the native communities and abundant wildlife the salmon have supported for thousands of years," Reynolds said. The Pebble copper-gold-molybdenum deposit is half owned by Northern Dynasty Minerals Ltd., a mineral exploration and development company based in Vancouver, British Columbia, and publicly traded in Canada and the United States. The other half of the project is owned by Anglo American plc based in London, UK, one of the world's largest diversified mining groups. Together, they call themselves the Pebble Partnership. The mine proposal has become a major political issue in Alaska, with pro-mining forces ranged against native villages and commercial and sport fishermen. Working with local conservation, tribal, and recreational organizations, as well as its own members, the Natural Resources Defense Council's BioGems initiative to save Bristol Bay will spearhead a national campaign harnessing the power of citizen activism to keep the mine from ever breaking ground and to advance long-term conservation of the area.
Posted 16 October 2009; 3:41:16 PM. Permalink