- Tue Apr 30, 2019 1:16 pm
If any of you want to write your reps a pointless email. The more of them that know at least one voter in their district cares about this the better. I recommend customizing, maybe adding some swears, heated ranting, perhaps suggesting someone owes your b hole a lick.
I am writing you related to the environmental impact statement (EIS) for Pebble Mine, the open pit copper and gold mine proposed by foreign owned mining company Northern Dynasty in the Bristol Bay region of Alaska.
Bristol Bay is currently home to America’s last great salmon run. The Bristol Bay sockeye salmon fishery employs almost 15,000 American workers and generates $650 million in annual labor income. It is a model of sustainable fishery practices for the entire world. We’ve destroyed much of our country’s salmon habitat from California to Washington – but in Alaska’s Bristol Bay, salmon are thriving and setting records each year. The region produces over 50 million sockeye salmon annually and over 50% of the world’s sockeye salmon harvest. This means sustainable jobs and delicious, nutritious food for Americans at a time when such things are of increasing value. Besides commercial fishing, the Bristol Bay region employs thousands of people in its sport fishing and ecotourism industries, and supports the traditional way of life for the area’s native people.
Those things are not negligible, they are not the inconsequential fringe interests of a small minority of Americans. Sustainable fisheries, sustainable recreational employment, and connection to natural resources are the future of America. These things deserve to be considered with the utmost diligence by decision makers. They deserve an honest process.
The current EIS submitted to the Army Corps by Northern Dynasty makes a mockery of that process. An EIS is meant to be an unbiased assessment of risks related to projects that impact our country’s natural resources. They are supposed to be scientifically grounded documents that provide decision makers with quality data in order to make accurate decisions on behalf of all Americans. The Pebble Mine EIS does not fulfill these requirements. Its estimates of damages to Bristol Bay’s salmon habitat hinges on a mine size that will extract less than 10% of the copper and gold in the deposit. For Northern Dynasty to expect Americans to believe that they will invest in the infrastructure required for a mine in this remote area only to walk away from 90% of their revenue is laughable. Further, the EIS neglects to assess risks in the aggregate; it considers the impacts of a toxic waste spill separate from the impact of draining wetlands to build roads, separate from the impact of acid created by exposed sulfides leaching into groundwater. Northern Dynasty has made an effort to downplay these impacts by claiming they would each occur separately in some sort of a controlled test tube environment. In reality, they will happen together, and we need to understand what that might mean. They also put a cap on the life of the risks – 50 years. What they don’t acknowledge is that the acidic tailing ponds created by open pit mining don’t disappear after 50 years. They are permanent. Earthen dams will need to be maintained for eternity to prevent toxic chemicals from leaching into groundwater or spilling into rivers.
Why does Northern Dynasty use a 50 year timeline? Because that is the time it will take them to extract the deposits. Beyond that time the mess will become a liability to the taxpayer. These superfund sites are already spread across our country, places where Americans who never saw a benefit pay to have their lands cleaned up after private interests have taken a profit and washed their hands of all responsibility. The Animas River disaster in Colorado is only a taste of what might happen in Bristol Bay.
Mining has a place in our economy, it is a necessity – but Bristol Bay is no test tube, it is no place to take risks that have not been fully and honestly evaluated. I am asking that you do everything in your power as a representative of the people to ensure that the Army Corps of Engineers requires Northern Dynasty to give the people an honest assessment of risks involved in this project. It is not only what the Corps is required to do – but it is also the right thing to do.
Thank you for your time.
Last edited by stillsteamin on Tue Apr 30, 2019 1:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
They all wanna be Hank Williams
They don't wanna have to die