August 02, 2013
The 1849 gold rush, sparked by the discovery of a large gold nugg...
Last week, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) hosted a public hearing regarding Pebble Mine, a proposed mining project that would be located in Bristol Bay, Alaska. Before plans and permits for the mine were finalized, the EPA stepped in to veto the project, an action that upset many Alaskans who support the project and the jobs and economic stimulus it would provide.
“When the government preempts us and steps right on in and shuts down private enterprise before we even get started, that’s a problem,” said Rep. Pete Higgins (R – District 5), at last week’s hearing. Many attended the hearing to ask the EPA and federal government to, at least, accept applications for the mine’s permits.
“These are our resources, selected at statehood, for development. To have the EPA or the federal government come in to tell us that we can’t develop our own land without even going through the process… we have to speak up,” stated Senator Cathy Giessel (R – District N).
The Pebble Partnership, an organization which seeks to develop the mine, has spent more than eight years and $120 million conducting one of the most extensive environmental studies ever undertaken in Alaska, in an effort to ensure the safety and protection of Bristol Bay. As reiterated by Giessel, “The process that the state of Alaska has set up is the most rigorous in the nation, we are constantly recognized as the most rigorous permitting process in the nation.”
New mining projects, like the Pebble Mine, could provide a number of benefits to local and state economies, including community investments, job creation and greater infrastructure to remote areas.
Learn more about the prospect of Pebble Mine here.