The Wild Alaskan Lands at Stake If the Pebble Mine Moves Ahead

Posted In News, Pollution
Jul
31

alaska-mining-project
Pebble Mine would be located 200 miles southwest of Anchorage and has been described as the potentially the world’s largest man-made excavation… “Imagine a pit two miles wide by 2,000 feet deep, and an underground mine a mile deep. This gargantuan gold and copper operation would produce an estimated 10 billion tons of contaminated waste: 3,000 pounds for every man, woman and child on Earth. Massive earthen dams, some taller than the Three Gorges Dam in China, would be constructed to hold back that waste forever. Now imagine all this in an active earthquake zone at the headwaters of the largest sockeye salmon runs in the world. The threat to Bristol Bay just below is unimaginable.No wonder the Pebble Mine is opposed by nearly 80 percent of Bristol Bay residents.”
– Actor and director Robert Redford, Huffington Post
Bristol Bay is the eastern-most arm of the Bering Sea in Southwest Alaska. A number of rivers flow into the bay, including the Cinder, Egegik, Igushik, Kvichak, Meshik, Nushagak, Naknek, Togiak, and Ugashik.
Upper reaches of Bristol Bay experience some of the highest tides in the world. One such reach, the Nushagak Bay near Dillingham and another near Naknek in Kvichak Bay have tidal extremes in excess of 10 m (30 ft), ranking them, and the area, as eighth highest in the world. Caption: Wikipedia. Photo source: ©© B.Mully

Excerpts;

The proposed Pebble Mine in southwestern Alaska is a project of almost unfathomable scale. The Pebble Limited Partnership intends to excavate a thick layer of ore — nearly a mile deep in places — containing an estimated 81 billion pounds of copper, 5.6 billion pounds of molybdenum, and 107 million ounces of gold.

The mine would cover 28 square miles and require the construction of the world’s largest earthen dam — 700 feet high and several miles long — to hold back a 10-square-mile containment pond filled with up to 2.5 billion tons of sulfide-laden mine waste…

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“Imagine a pit two miles wide by 2,000 feet deep, and an underground mine a mile deep. This gargantuan gold and copper operation would produce an estimated 10 billion tons of contaminated waste: 3,000 pounds for every man, woman and child on Earth. Massive earthen dams, some taller than the Three Gorges Dam in China, would be constructed to hold back that waste forever. Now imagine all this in an active earthquake zone at the headwaters of the largest sockeye salmon runs in the world. The threat to Bristol Bay just below is unimaginable.No wonder the Pebble Mine is opposed by nearly 80 percent of Bristol Bay residents.”
– Actor and director Robert Redford, Huffington Post

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