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Public Comment Period on Bristol Bay Watershed Assessment Extended

Washington Post calls issue “the biggest environmental decision…you’ve never heard of…”


The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has officially extended the public comment period for its draft Bristol Bay Watershed Assessment – a review released in April in response to calls from anti-mining groups for the EPA to issue a preemptive permit veto under section 404(c) of the Clean Water Act of the Pebble mine project in Alaska.

The Washington Post notes the issue’s importance, which has so far flown largely under the national media’s radar, as potentially “one of the most important environmental decisions the president faces in his second term.”

The situation does indeed deserve greater attention. The Pebble deposit is quite possibly the largest copper resource in American history, and responsible development of it could create tens of thousands of much-needed jobs and billions in economic development. Far more is at stake, though, as a preemptive permit veto prior to the NEPA (National Environmental Policy Act) process has never been done. As we have previously pointed out, if this precedent is set, every exploratory domestic resource project in the United States will be at risk, jeopardizing our economic and national security future.

With the comment period extended, please consider weighing in on this important issue and submit a comment to the EPA via their website, if you haven’t done so already.

For your convenience, here are some key facts and links for further information, as well as a sample message.