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British Columbia releases cleanup plan for Tulsequah Chief Mine

Aug 19, 2020

British Columbia has released a long-awaited cleanup plan for the Tulsequah Chief Mine. The Canadian mine 40 miles northeast of Juneau has been leaching acidic runoff into a tributary feeding into the Taku River — a major salmon producing habitat — for years.

CoastAlaska's Ed Schoenfeld reports a tailings dam break at a British Columbia copper and gold mine could threaten Southeast Alaska salmon fisheries, according to critics who say similar dams closer to the border could suffer the same fate, polluting Alaskan waters.

The Environmental Protection Agency has awarded $888,000 to the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium for research on climate change and contaminant shifts, and effects on human health in rural communities. The grant is one of six given out nationwide. The study will focus on traditional foods.

As President Obama announces his intention to vastly expand a south  Pacific marine sanctuary, a scientist at a State Department conference in Washington, D.C., say ocean acidification is affecting all sea life. Ove Hoegh-Guldberg says the acidic marine climate is preventing some animals from forming skeletons and shells, and preventing reproduction. It will take 10,000 years, or 300 generations of humans, he says, to reverse the trend.

A hot-shot crew and smoke-jumpers headed to Tyonek to contain a wildfire as gusty winds and low humidity add to wildfire danger in south central Alaska.

Tribal leaders from Canada and Alaska say they will work together to oppose mines, affecting both sides of the border.

A Governmental Accountability Office reports calls U.S. participation in Arctic Council uncoordinated and lacking in follow-through.