February 11, 2011 Newsletter
Lots of news – including some very big news – so here’s to hoping your 2011 is off to a great start…now let’s get to it.
Here are some of the highlights from the past month. As always, there’s much more found at the Latest News page on the SAA site. I encourage you to visit that page and peruse the stories from the past six weeks.
BREAKING NEWS ON BRISTOL BAY – THE MOMENT WE’VE BEEN WAITING FOR!
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced on Mon., Feb. 7, that it will review the suitability of large-scale development projects – such as the proposed Pebble mine – in the Bristol Bay watershed. While this is just a first step, it was an important one…and one the EPA needed to take if we are to achieve our ultimate goal of protecting the world’s largest wild salmon fishery and one of the planet’s premiere sporting destinations. We’ll need to keep the foot on the gas pedal and crank up the grassroots networks in the coming year so we make sure EPA follows this process through to its (logical) conclusion.
Take a few minutes to learn more about this exciting announcement.
At Left: SAA supporter and volunteer Tom Schroeder from Texas… showing what it’s all about! © T. Schroeder
Click the button to send a message to the EPA and to your members of Congress in support of protections for Bristol Bay – how easy was that?!?!
Now tell your friends and family to do it.
Bristol Bay: Guide Academy coming back in 2011
Alaska magazine did a very nice feature story on the Bristol Bay Fly Fishing + Guide Academy, a project to train local youth for positions in the sport fishing industry. The academy has been held twice in the past three years on the Nushagak River. In 2011, the academy will move to the east side of Bristol Bay and will be held May 22-29 on the Naknek River. Visit the academy's Web site or contact TTroll@tnc.org if you are interested in learning more.
Last Call: Fish in Bristol Bay with Artist Derek DeYoung and The Drake magazine Senior Editor
Acclaimed fish artist Derek DeYoung of CanvasFish.com fame and Geoff Mueller from The Drake magazine are headed to Bristol Bay in June 2011. This trip will split time between Copper River Lodge and Royal Coachman Lodge. Cost is $5,800 per person and there is room for up to five anglers to join Derek and Geoff for what should be a terrific time. Contact Scott@SportsmansAlliance4AK.org if you are interested. This opportunity will close soon.
Bristol Bay: Alaska Natives in Good Position to Deal with Federal Government
The Anchorage Press ran a story about how Alaska Natives hope to leverage their stronger standing in dealings with the U.S. government in the effort to protect Bristol Bay from the proposed Pebble Mine. The story includes an update on the court case involving Pebble in Alaska state court.
Bristol Bay: Got Time and a Fast Internet Connection? Learn from the Experts.
Last November, the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association convened a panel discussion at Fish Expo (a commercial fishing trade show in Seattle). Video summaries of the discussion, which features fisheries biologists, experts on mining impacts, economic analysis, and sport fishing can be found here.
Tongass National Forest: Stories coming in from 2010 SAA Media Trip
Last summer, SAA hosted three outdoor writers on a trip to Prince of Wales Island. While major stories are yet to come, a few have begun to show up. The Bristol (VA) Herald-Courier did a story about the Tongass and the collaborative efforts to work on conservation there. Indian Country Today did a travel piece on Prince of Wales.
At Right: U.S. Forest Service staff giving tour of restoration work on Prince of Wales Island during SAA trip. © Scott Hed
Tongass National Forest: Sealaska Lands Bill certain to return in new Congress
Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) issued an update on the Sealaska Lands Bill as the 112th Congress convenes. Her stated goals are to hold a series of in-region public meetings in early 2011, reaching a final compromise by late winter 2011, and reintroducing the bill with hopes of it passing. KFSK radio in Petersburg, AK began a six-part series on the Sealaska Lands Bill today. All six segments can be read and listened to from this page.
Tongass National Forest: Tongass Futures Roundtable holds First Meeting of 2011
The Juneau Empire editorialized on the need for this collaborative effort by a tremendous diversity of interest groups to continue working to find a balanced future for the Tongass.
Show Season Winding Down
SAA has been criss-crossing the country at sporting shows since the calendar turned to 2011. Largely through the dedication and generosity of volunteers, we’ve been able to spread the message of Alaska conservation. Thousands of hunters and anglers have signed up to help protect places like Bristol Bay and the Tongass National Forest at these shows. The last show on the calendar takes place at the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation’s Elk Camp in Reno, Nev., March 3-6. Stop by and visit if you’re there.
A hearty thanks to all who volunteered this year – we honestly could not do it without you!
At Left: Camille Egdorf spreading the Alaska message at a recent show. Credit: Ian Majzak (Detonation Studios).
Special Offer from Pro Photographer Terry Gunn
Here’s an opportunity to get a sweet image of Bristol Bay and help support the fight to protect this amazing place…all at the same time! Angler and photographer Terry Gunn has made a variety of his great images (example right) available for purchase, with all profits to benefit SAA’s work. Prints available in sizes from 4”x6” to 20”x30”, so there’s something for everyone! Suitable for framing or you can get the image mounted on lightweight gatorboard. Visit Terry's site to view and order your prints. Thanks for the support, Terry!
At Right: Sample image from Angler and photographer Terry Gunn. © Terry Gunn
Donate to SAA – New Opportunities!
SAA is grateful for the generous support of individuals, businesses, and foundations. Your donations allow SAA to continue to work on efforts to protect prime fishing and hunting habitats in the Last Frontier for the benefit of current and future sportsmen and women. We’re running a few new special donation promotions with the following items available. Make your donations online at the secure SAA donation page; all amounts are accepted and appreciated! For donations of the following amounts, please indicate what item you’d like to receive in the “comment” box on the donation page.
Thanks for whatever you’re able to contribute to help secure a future for fishing and hunting on Alaska’s public lands!
Thanks for caring about Alaska conservation. We’ll need all your help in the coming year!
Director – Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska