The release also informs $450 million generated annually with 10,000 supplied jobs by the salmon fishery of Alaska Native villages. These villages have requested the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to head off the Pebble project by invoking a provision in the Clean Water Act that would restrict the dumping of mine waste in streams, wetlands and rivers that drain into the Bay. The EPA responded to the requests from tribes and others by announcing plans to launch a scientific review of the suitability of large-scale mining in Bristol Bay watershed.
Kim Williams, executive director for Nuamta Aulukestai (Caretakers of our Land)an association of nine Alaska Native village corporations in Bristol Bayconsiders the pledge by the fifty-four jewelers and the EPAs announcement by saying, The support from jewelers and the recent announcement by EPA are a great gift this Valentine's Day. We're confident that this scientific review will show clearly why Bristol Bay should be protected under Section 404(c).
On Feb. 14, Nunamta Aulukestai, the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association and the Alaska Independent Fishermen's Marketing Association plan to run full-page ads in Washington, D.C.s Politico and Roll Call, to further urge the EPA to invoke Section 404(c) of the Clean Water Act. That same day, Alaskans will also be sending Valentines to key members of Congress and EPA officials in Washington D.C. that state: As Alaska Natives and commercial fishermen of Bristol Bay, we urge the EPA to initiate the Clean Water Act's 404(c) process to protect the waters of Bristol Bay from billions of tons of mine waste.
As for the fifty-four jewelers pledge, Bonnie Gestring of Earthworks says, We commend these jewelers for their pledge. Consumers don't want the symbol of their love to come at the expense of this national treasure.
For more information, visit the Earthworks press release here. Image provided by clistersbackchannel.wordpress.com