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Alaska Beat

PBS program shines a spotlight on Pebble debate

  • Author: Craig Medred
  • Updated: September 27, 2016
  • Published September 11, 2012

Alaskans interested in the proposed Pebble Mine in Bristol Bay can check out the "FRONTLINE" documentary on the issue called "Alaska Gold" at 7 p.m. Tuesday on Alaska Public Television, or KAKM (Channel 7) in Anchorage.

Bristol Bay attracts one of the last great wild sockeye salmon runs in the world but is also believed to contain one of the largest mineral deposits of copper, gold and molybdenum. The Pebble Partnership, a collaboration between Anglo American and Northern Dynasty Mines, wants to extract this mineral wealth by digging one of North America's largest open-pit mines.

Supporters of the project would bring enormous economic benefits to a struggling region, creating jobs and generating tax revenue for both the state and local governments. However, there is considerable public concern about the environmental impact of the mine. Opponents argue that the Bristol Bay watershed could be affected, with potentially devastating consequences for the fish populations and those who depend upon it for their livelihood.

A preview of the 90-minute program is here.

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