EARTHblog » Bonnie Gestring
February 6, 2013
Once in a while an opportunity comes along, where all the pieces come together just at the right moment. This is that moment for Oregon's Chetco River. Despite its wild and scenic designation, the Chetco is still vulnerable to mining under the 1872 mining law, which prioritizes mining over all other land uses.
The Forest Service recently released an environmental assessment (EA) that makes it clear that suction dredge mining would threaten the outstanding values for which the area was designated - fisheries, water quality and recreation. It emphasizes that these values are critical to the local economy, and they can only be protected through a mineral withdrawal.
October 4, 2012
The rivers and streams of Bristol Bay, Alaska support the largest wild sockeye salmon fishery in the world, and supply nearly 50% of the world’s commercial sockeye salmon.
Every year, millions of wild salmon make the epic journey from the ocean to the rivers and streams that feed Bristol Bay to reproduce -- supplying the world with healthy seafood, a feast for hungry bears, eagles and beluga whales, and roughly 14,000 jobs along the way.
Now, plans for a massive open pit, copper and gold mine, known as the Pebble Mine, put the future of the fishery in question. If developed, the Pebble Mine would be the largest open pit mine in North America, straddling the headwaters of two of the most important salmon spawning rivers.