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All eyes on Southwest Alaska and results of Pebble Mine vote

Craig MedredAlaska Dispatch

All eyes are on Southwest Alaska as the Lake and Peninsula Borough prepares to announce results of a vote earlier this month that could impact the future of a proposed copper, gold and molybdenum mine valued in the billions.

Lake and Pen voters had until Oct. 4 to mail in their ballots on the Save our Salmon initiative, which aims to protect salmon-producing streams in the Bristol Bay watershed from "destruction or degradation during large-scale mining activities." Results will be announced late Monday.

The vote has polarized much of Alaska, not to mention fishermen and politicians in Washington state. Here's an NPR News segment, produced in Dillingham, about how locals perceive the proposed Pebble Mine and its potential to benefit -- or destroy -- ways of life in the region. Read the full transcript of the radio segment here.

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The initiative was largely bankrolled by one man, Bob Gillam, widely considered Alaska's wealthiest resident, and an ardent opponent of the proposed mine.