Locus Focus on 10/22/12
RUSH TO JUDGEMENT?: EPA WATERSHED STUDY OF THE PEBBLE MINE IN BRISTOL BAY, ALASKA
The Pebble Mine proposed in southwestern Alaska is slated to become one of the largest gold, copper and molybdenum mines in the world. It would produce more than 10 billion tons of mining waste laced with toxins that threatens to decimate the world's largest salmon fishery in Bristol Bay. The mine would eliminate or block nearly 87 miles of salmon streams, destroy up to 4,286 acres of wetlands, and threaten to contaminate the ground and surface waters throughout the Bristol Bay watershed.
This past summer the EPA released a watershed assessment of the impact the mine. Opponents of the mine, ranging from fishermen and environmental groups to Alaskan Republican senators, believe that on the basis of this study, the EPA should block the Pebble Mine. However, a group of scientists believe that the EPA study was a rush job that does not begin to portray the true impacts of the mine. On this episode of Locus Focus we talk with Dan McGroarty, president of the American Resources Policy Network, a public policy research organization that promotes increased mining activities in the United States and believes that by caving in to "special interest groups" in Alaska, the EPA study will be used to halt the Pebble Mine, which ARPN supports.
Then we'll hear from one of those so-called "special interest groups." Our second guest is Dwayne Meadows, Trout Unlimited’s National Outreach Director for the Bristol Bay Campaign, which is trying to stop the Pebble Mine and protect the existing jobs and natural resources of Bristol Bay, AK.