April 7, 2015 Newsletter
Welcome to spring – and the April edition of the SAA News. There’s some Bristol Bay, Tongass, and Transboundary news and some fantastic offers to help the Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska continue fighting for protection of fish and game habitat in the Great Land. You’ll find incredible deals on fishing trips, great gear on the SAA online auction, and the special offers from Fishpond and Vedavoo are still available. You can always see a comprehensive collection of news items on the Latest News page.
Bristol Bay: Pebble Continues Delay Tactics
The campaign to protect Bristol Bay rages on. Relying on sound science and with massive public support in Alaska and around the nation, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency proposed a set of common-sense restrictions in July 2014 that could protect Bristol Bay and its incomparable wild salmon fishery from dangerous large-scale mines such as the proposed Pebble Mine. Without any major financial backing, the Pebble Limited Partnership has resorted to tactics aimed at delaying EPA’s finalization of the proposed restrictions – filing lawsuits against EPA and lobbying Congress to change the rules of the game in the late innings. EPA is currently prohibited from completing its Bristol Bay work under the Clean Water Act until one of Pebble’s various lawsuits is sorted out. In the meantime, Pebble is spending money on high-priced lobbyists to get legislation introduced in both the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives which would change the Clean Water Act itself, taking away EPA’s ability to use the Act in Bristol Bay at this point. Tell your Senators and Representatives: EPA must be allowed to finish its work in Bristol Bay!
- Trout Unlimited’s Alaska program director responded to former Governor and U.S. Senator Frank Murkowski’s recent criticism of the EPA over the proposed Pebble Mine in an opinion editorial in the Fairbanks News Miner.
- KDLG reports that the Pebble Limited Partnership has hired former U.S. Secretary of Defense William Cohen to conduct a review on the “fairness” of EPA’s work in Bristol Bay that could result in the proposed Pebble Mine not being permitted. This is the latest attempt by Pebble to delay the process and call into question EPA’s work.
- The Pebble Limited Partnership has a unique definition of “independent” per this Huffington Post column that discusses Pebble’s recent efforts to hire two more DC-based firms to conduct an “independent” review of the “fairness” of EPA’s actions related to the proposed Pebble Mine in Bristol Bay.
Transboundary Mine Threat
- Here’s a great piece featuring six Southeast Alaskans speaking out about the risk of Transboundary mines in British Columbia.
- The Juneau Empire editorialized strongly on the urgent need to stop more large and dangerous mines in British Columbia from risking Southeast Alaska’s waterways.
- High Country News reported on how Canada’s mining boom is spilling risk into Southeast Alaska.
- The blog DeSmog Canada writes on the latest Transboundary mine to open: Brucejack.
- Despite a report from an expert engineering panel calling for better mine waste storage policies in the wake of the Mount Polley tailings dam failure, no coming mines in British Columbia plan to change their plans per the Vancouver Sun.
Tongass National Forest
- A resident of Gustavus wrote an opinion editorial in the Juneau Empire calling on the U.S. Forest Service to implement its plan to transition out of old growth timber harvest faster.
- DC publication The Hill ran an opinion piece that touted the merits of the Tongass’ true economic engines – tourism and fishing.
- Alaska Dispatch News reports that the Big Thorne timber sale on Prince of Wales Island has been temporarily blocked by a federal court. Big Thorne would be the biggest Tongass timber sale in a generation, and would result in the loss of vital old growth habitat.
The Breach – Wild Salmon Documentary Touring the Country
A Bristol Bay native leader wrote an opinion editorial in the Bristol Bay Times about the recent successful tour in Alaska featuring the documentary film The Breach and how the residents of Bristol Bay continue to battle the proposed Pebble Mine. Now you can see this award-winning film, as it starts its Lower 48 tour. The tour will visit 15 cities, with details at the link above. Here are some of the dates:
On 4/21, The Breach will be available on your favorite Video On Demand services (think iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, Google Play, etc.).
Make sure to watch it with your salmon-loving friends!
Miscellaneous Items From Around Alaska
- The Chuitna coal mine proposal is the focus of this opinion editorial in the Alaska Dispatch News.
- Speaking of Chuitna…watch the trailer for More than Salmon on the Line – coming in 2015.
- Here’s a neat story from Sporting Classics Daily about the propensity for trout to eat more mammals than you think, based on studies in Alaska.
- While not Alaska-specific, this Open Letter to America's Anglers deserves to be read – it’s a call to action to defend the waters we love.
Help Protect Alaska – By Fishing in Alaska! Incredible Offers on Trips…
The Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska is grateful for support from the following Alaska fishing operations who are offering discounts between 36% and 39% on 2015 open dates to donors to the Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska.
- Alaska’s Boardwalk Lodge (Prince of Wales Island)
- Royal Coachman Lodge (Bristol Bay region)
- Bristol Bay Sportfishing (Bristol Bay region)
- Painter Creek Lodge (Alaska Peninsula)
- Egdorf’s Western Alaska Sportfishing (Bristol Bay region)
- Alagnak Lodge (Bristol Bay region)
Act fast, as there’s only one discounted trip for 1 or 2 anglers available at each operation, and it’s first-come, first-served!
Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska eBay Auction
You need some new gear, don’t you? Well, you could get a great deal and support the Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska at the same time!
That’s right – the Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska online auction is back. And in a few short weeks, it’s already raised over $9,000!
Right now, you can bid on rods, reels, clothing, hunting optics, fishing accessories, artwork, and more.
Check out the offerings from seller sa4ak on eBay. Some of the items ending soon are a Sage ONE fly rod, a $500 Marmot gift card, a rod/reel/line combo from Orvis, and a Contender jacket from Simms.
Donations from dozens of the top outdoor brands will be offered for sale through April, with all proceeds benefitting the Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska!
Check back often, as there will be several new listings added every week.
Fishpond and Vedavoo Promotions Raise Funds for SAA
At Fishpond, we have a passion for creating products that stretch the boundaries of traditional product design and set new standards for functionality. With our roots firmly planted in our core fishing market, we have expanded our portfolio of products to include several new items targeting the outdoor adventure travel and lifestyle segments.
We’re proud to offer two products that will benefit the SAA.
For every Boulder Briefcase sale, Fishpond will donate $60 to SAA.
*** When you purchase online from Fishpond, just select the product option that includes “Donation to SAA” and Fishpond will take care of the rest. It costs nothing extra to you.
BETTER AMERICAN GEAR
Our work is hand-cut, prepped, built, and finished to order in our workshop. We use American fabrics, hardware, and webbing - even the thread we use is USA made! Why - because it lasts, and because it matters. We're looking forward to building for you! And customize with the No Pebble Mine logo to benefit the SAA…
As long as the battle continues...we’ll keep making streamside billboards!
For a minimum of $10, you can have the iconic No Pebble Mine patch added to any Vedavoo gear. 100% of your Donation for this patch will be sent to the SPORTSMAN'S ALLIANCE FOR ALASKA – supporting their front-line efforts to protect the Bristol Bay watershed.
The patch can be sewn on any of our hand-built gear – but looks great on our Tightlines Sling, TL Beast Sling, Spinner Daypack, Daypack, Drifter, Hip Pack, and Leader Wallets.
Other Ways to Support SAA and the Fight for Fishing and Hunting in Alaska
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. Make your donations online at the secure online donation page; all amounts are accepted and appreciated – SAA is a lean, mean, one-man operation but it takes funding to do this work. For donations of the following amounts, please include “SAA” and indicate what item you’d like to receive in the “comment” box on the donation page.
- $15 No Pebble Mine trucker hat or No Pebble Mine red sockeye design t-shirt ($30 value and only 25 in stock) or Aquafly box ($20 value)
- $30 BEST Deal…Get all three $15 items (hat, t-shirt, fly box) – specify t-shirt size!
- $125 4-in-1 Alaska or Fab Four - Alaskan September giclee print by Derek DeYoung (13” x 19”) ($120 value)
$125 - “Fab Four – Alaskan September” by Derek DeYoung
(If you have any questions on how to donate, send an e-mail!)
Do You Shop Online? Doesn’t Nearly Everyone These Days?
Two Ways to Help Alaska Conservation – Easy and Free!!!
SAA’s parent organization – the Alaska Conservation Foundation – is now an official recipient organization of Amazon Donations.
It’s super easy to make a donation and doesn’t cost you a thing!
Amazon will automatically donate 0.5% of your total purchases to ACF.
Sign up for a free iGive.com account!
Your favorite cause (SAA!) will earn $5. It’s free and easy.
There is no obligation to make any purchases, but you can shop at over 900 online merchants and a percentage of the sale will be donated to SAA.
Thanks for caring about Alaska conservation. Your support and actions will ensure a future for Alaska’s fish and game and for coming generations of sportsmen and women to enjoy them.
Director – Sportsman’s Alliance for Alaska