British Columbia’s Auditor-General in early May issued a scathing report on the government’s lack of enforcement and compliance. The report calls for the creation of an independent agency to take over regulation of the industry in B.C. It is unfortunate that this report comes to the same conclusion as the Auditors report from 2011 despite assurances that improvements will be made.
Now is the time to again request that the State Department defend Southeast Alaska’s transboundary rivers by referring the issue to the International Joint Commission (IJC). Please support this effort by reviewing and adding your name to the petition below to Secretary of State John Kerry.
We need to raise the issue of transboundary mining to a federal level in both the U.S. and Canada to ensure an adequate review is conducted to establish enforceable protections of our water and fisheries resources.
Dear Secretary Kerry,
The economy and culture of Southeast Alaska are directly tied to the health of our rivers and our salmon runs. We are concerned that massive mining development upstream in British Columbia, in the headwaters of major transboundary salmon rivers such as the Taku, Stikine and Unuk, will threaten our water quality and fisheries, and thus our jobs, culture and overall way of life. A recent B.C. auditor-general report concludes that the B.C. government has put its economic interest in promoting the mining industry ahead of environmental regulation, writing “We found almost every one of our expectations for a robust compliance and enforcement program … were not met.”
We urge you to engage with the Canadian government and also take action to safeguard Southeast Alaska’s $2-billion-a-year fishing and tourism industries and rich cultural and traditional heritage from mine pollution.
Like most Americans, I want Alaska's natural resources managed in a responsible way. Best Management Practices must be established and enforced to protect fish and water quality in this world-class salmon region that we share.