Alaskans owe a debt of gratitude to many companies and individuals and especially the Alaska Native Corporations for their recent efforts to defeat Ballot Measure 4.
The growing partnership between Native corporations and the mining industry is building a foundation of economic, cultural and environmental sustainability.
The Clean Water Initiative had potential to undermine the Native corporations' future. They recognized early that the ballot measure was not about clean water, but rather, was a "nuclear bomb" approach to preemptively stop the Pebble Mine project, which is still in the exploration stage.
The Native corporations recognized that projects on their private lands would be damaged if the ballot measure passed and fought against it. They effectively defended their rights and their future against this attack with dignity, zeal and pride, cutting through the rhetoric to the heart of the matter. Most of the Native corporations have seen first-hand that state and federal laws and regulations already provide stringent protection of water and that mines can provide cultural, environmental and economic sustainability over the long haul.
On behalf of the Alaska mining industry, and all those Alaskans whose lives the industry touches, the Alaska Miners Association applauds your wisdom and courage and extends its heartfelt thanks to the Alaska Native Corporations.
Alaska Miners Association