The Bristol Bay Fishery Reserve is one of the last undisturbed salmon ecosystems in the world. Senate Bill 152 would help to protect the delicate environment of Bristol Bay and, by extension, one of Alaska’s most renewable resources — salmon fisheries.
If a large-scale mining operation such as Pebble Mine was to be developed in this region, it could damage Alaska’s entire fishing industry. To people not living in Alaska, salmon from Bristol Bay is “Alaskan salmon” — regardless of which bay it originated from. The reputation, and therefore the prices, of all Alaskan salmon would be tainted, not only that of Bristol Bay salmon. Many Alaskan jobs would be lost as a result of this. With the failure of the salmon fishing industry, an entire culture and way of life (not to mention subsistence living) would be endangered.
Senate Bill 152 would provide an additional legislative review in order to prevent a hazardous mining operation in the Bay. Remember, Bristol Bay supplies over half of the wild red salmon on the world market. Pebble Mine would be the largest open pit mine in the world, yet it would only provide a small, short-term boom in jobs. In this vulnerable landscape, even a small error could mean disastrous consequences.
Supporting Senate Bill 152 will help to prevent a disaster that would impact the people, fish, and economy of Alaska. Please ask your congressmen and women to support Senator Hollis French and this important Bill.