Full-Page Ad Urges First Quantum to Dump the Pebble Mine

Ad Targets Annual Shareholder Meeting in Toronto

Opponents of the Pebble Mine appeared today in Toronto at the annual meeting of First Quantum Minerals with a message for its shareholders:

“We Will Never Relent in our Fight Against the Pebble Mine.”

Pebble Mine is a giant low-grade gold and copper mine proposed in a seismically active, porous area at the headwaters of world’s most prolific wild sockeye salmon fishery in Bristol Bay, Alaska.

A coalition representing Alaskan business leaders, Bristol Bay Tribes, commercial fishermen and conservation organizations delivered that message, as well as over 250,000 of petitions—100,000 from NRDC members and activists—urging First Quantum not to invest in the project.

The coalition also ran a full-page ad in the Toronto Globe and Mail, calling Pebble Mine the “wrong mine in the wrong place."

First Quantum Minerals is currently deciding whether to stake a 50% claim in Pebble. It shouldn’t.

The Pebble Mine is different from other mining projects: it’s been opposed relentlessly in the region, is unsupported by the science, has been censured by the IUCN World Conservation Congress, and has already been abandoned by three of the largest mining companies in the world. 

It is a project facing major environmental, regulatory, legal, and operational risks—not to mention worldwide opposition.

More than 80 percent of residents and 85 percent of commercial fishermen in Bristol Bay oppose the project. Opposition is bipartisan, and it’s growing from business leaders, government officials, communities and tribes. Bristol Bay leaders have repeatedly said that they “will never support a Pebble mine in Bristol Bay.” Former EPA Administrators from the Nixon, Reagan, and both Bush Administrations also voiced opposition. 

A three-year, twice-peer reviewed scientific study conducted by the U.S. EPA concluded that the Pebble Mine could have “significant” and potentially “catastrophic” effects on the region.

The 170-nation IUCN World Conservation Congress voted virtually unanimously to oppose the Pebble Mine and urged the U.S. government to deny permits.

In short, the proposed Pebble Mine is one of the most widely condemned projects anywhere today.

It is a risky investment.

All of the Pebble Mine’s major investors have withdrawn from the project:

  • Mitsubishi in 2011;
  • Anglo American in 2013; and,
  • Rio Tinto in 2014.

First Quantum Minerals should do the same and walk away from Bristol Bay.

“If First Quantum funds the Pebble Mine, it will do so in defiance of scientific consensus, world opinion, and overwhelming local opposition,” the Toronto Globe and Mail ad reads.

Groups representing the economic, cultural, and social foundations of Bristol Bay signed the ad and are supported by other organizations—like NRDC—in their efforts to halt the Pebble Mine.

Our collective message is unequivocal:

“First Quantum, we’re prepared to fight forever. Are you?”

About the Authors

Taryn Kiekow Heimer

Deputy Director, Marine Mammal Protection Project, Nature Program

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