Native Corporation Seeks Federal Protection for Bristol Bay

Adam Kane, KDLG – Dillingham

The Native Corporation for the Bristol Bay region has submitted a request to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency asking for federal protection of Bristol Bay’s natural resources.

The Bristol Bay Native Corporation submitted the letter to the federal agency asking the EPA to use its authority under Section 404-c of the Clean Water Act to prevent the discharge of dredged or fill material from the proposed Pebble Mine.

404-c allows the EPA to use a public process to prohibit or restrict the discharge of mine waste into waters and wetlands that would have an unacceptable adverse effect on municipal water supplies, fisheries, wildlife or recreation.

Jason Metrokin, president and CEO of BBNC, stated that the request for federal protections was not a reaction to the recent proposal by Representative Don Young to eliminate the Section 404-c of the federal Clean Water Act.

Metrokin maintains that BBNC is not opposed to all development, only the Pebble Mine Project. The Environmental Protection Agency has only used its 404-c authority 12 times.

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