Fish Radio
Senate candidates slam EPA
August 12, 2014

Pebble Mine dams to hold toxins forever Credit: EcoWatch

Pebble Mine dams to hold toxins forever
Credit: EcoWatch

This is Fish Radio. I’m Laine Welch – Senate candidates slam the EPA at Bristol Bay. More after this –

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The three Republican Senate candidates hoping to unseat Mark Begich want environmental regulators to butt out of Alaska’s mining development decisions. At a Rural Alaska forum hosted by KYUK in Bethel, all slammed the EPA for its plans to impose strict water requirements aimed at blocking the proposed Pebble Mine.

Senate candidate Mead Treadwell –To have the EPA come in and take power away from the permitting process is not necessarily going to solve the Pebble problem, and it’s going to hurt mines all over the state. As we go through the Pebble process, looking for an easy yes or no answer can have huge effects on other mining, other resource development projects in the state and we have to be extremely careful. And I believe the EPA solidly over reached on this one,” Treadwell said, concluding with a barb at Sen. Begich, who opposes the Pebble Mine, for “not letting the state make its own decisions and sending the decisions back to Washington.”

Candidate Dan Sullivan said “the pre-emptive veto is another example of the Obama Administration acting in a lawless manner.”

“When a company comes in and is asked by the state to explore the resources, which is what happened in the Pebble case, they should be allowed to go through the permitting process,” Sullivan said. “It’s state land, a project they haven’t seen the details of yet, and they are saying they have pre-emptive authority under the Clean Water Act – I don’t think they do. This to me would set a bad precedent all over the state. And I’ve been someone who’s had a career of not only talking about the EPA, but who has actually taken them on and gone to court against them.”

   Candidate Joe Miller said the EPA “has been used as a hammer against the state.”

“We have to push back against the EPA at every point we have. It’s a state issue and the state should be in charge of it, and the state should do it in a way that the people direct.”

All candidates disregard the fact that the EPA came to Alaska after two years of urging by more than a dozen First Alaskan groups, plus thousands of commercial and sport fishermen and other residents.


Fish Radio is also brought to you by Ocean Beauty Seafoods – serving Alaska’s fishing communities since 1910.    On the web at .. In Kodiak, I’m Laine Welch.