Opposition to the proposed Pebble Mine in Alaska’s Bristol Bay is growing to the point that one has to wonder who — outside of the mining companies — could still support the idea of an open-pit mine that would endanger a pristine watershed where tens of millions of salmon spawn
How is it that an oil and gas industry rolling in profits can manage to receive government subsidies and tax breaks while conservation programs that are only a small part of the federal budget are threatened with the ax as Congress attempts to balance America’s budget?
And this proposal is made even worse by the bill it’s a part of – the 2012 Interior Appropriation Bill – which makes deep cuts to environmental programs like the Land and Water Conservation Fund, and yet more cuts to the Environmental Protection Agency.
Large-scale natural gas drilling operations in the county are to blame, and now, headlines in LA have Sublette County residents thinking: “We already have that city’s smog problem. Do we want its water pollution problems too?”
In a Congressional season marked by radical anti-wilderness legislation and historic cuts to environmental programs that protect our land, water, and air, bipartisan action in the Senate seems increasingly rare.
What do you get when you take the leading voice for sustainable communities, add in youth from Alaska and all over the world, throw in a dash of inside-the-beltway DC policy experience, and bake it all together in a pan the size of the Chugach National Forest?