Bristol Bay is synonymous with wild salmon. Each year tens of millions of salmon return to the pristine rivers and streams of southwest Alaska, fueling one of the most productive commercial, recreational, and subsistence fisheries in the world -- sustaining the people, communities, and wildlife of Bristol Bay for thousands of years.
Since large mines inevitably contaminate their surroundings, and since copper in amounts of only a few parts per billion over background levels is toxic to salmon, the Pebble Mine is a disaster in the making – a toxic time-bomb if ever there was one.
The risks of Pebble Mine are staggering, unavoidable, and unacceptable.
I’ve seen no one express this more eloquently, in fewer words, than Bristol Bay native Holly Wysocki.
I met her recently in Dillingham, where, like so many people in the region at this time of year, she was feverishly in the midst of last minute preparations for this year’s salmon season.
Holly is in her mid-twenties and was raised in subsistence and commercial fishing, which she’s continued all her life. Born and still living in the town of Dillingham on the shores of Bristol Bay, Holly’s life and that of her family revolve around the wild salmon fishery and depend on its protection -- literally.
Holly’s view of the Pebble Mine? “Self-destruction.”
See for yourself what she has to say about Pebble in a television ad from the Renewable Resources Coalition in Anchorage. It only takes 30 seconds, and you won’t regret it. Maybe you’ll never forget it.
The Pebble Mine isn’t an abstraction or a mere cause for Holly Wysocki and the people of Bristol Bay. It’s a matter of life and death. This may be why, according to recent surveys, over 80 percent of Bristol Bay residents oppose the mine.
We have to stop the Pebble Mine.
Take action now. And please send this blog post to everyone you know.