Yesterday Anglo American, a 50 percent partner in the Pebble Limited Partnership, announced that it is withdrawing from Pebble Mine, a giant gold and copper mine proposed at the headwaters of Bristol Bay, Alaska.
EPA just concluded a 60-day public comment period, and the vast majority of people asked EPA to protect Bristol Bay from Pebble Mine. NRDC members and activists alone sent over 267,000 petitions to the agency.
You can't recreate untouched tundra, mountain meadows, crystal clear streams, and animals that have never encountered toxic waste. We don't have many of these wild places left. We should preserve the ones we do.
All in all, it was another tough year for the Pebble Mine. And, in the coming year, look for more of the same. Bristol Bay is no place for large-scale mining, and the Pebble Mine will eventually be stopped. It's only a matter of time.
If Mr. Norquist would learn a little more about the global copper industry, he might understand that, not only is the Pebble Mine unnecessary, it is precisely what we don't need -- for renewable energy or any other of copper's countless uses today.
After 15 months of study, the agency released in draft form for public comment an extensive scientific assessment of the Bristol Bay watershed undertaken to determine the potential impacts of large-scale mining.
Bristol Bay demonstrates that some places should be left free of industrial development because their natural resource values, and the benefits they provide to people, outstrip short-term development values.
All of these poll results -- together with last month's approval in the Lake and Peninsula Borough of the "Save Our Salmon" initiative -- are the latest evidence that the Pebble Mine is a failure in the making.
Next year, developers plan to apply for permits for the construction of America's largest open-pit copper and gold mine, in the heart of Alaska's most valuable salmon runs. It's not too late for us to stop them if we act now.