Opinion: Mine cleanup plan is encouraging, but there’s still work to be done – by Cynthia Wallesz (Juneau Empire – September 7, 2020)

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Cynthia Wallesz is an Alaska seafood advocate who fishes commercially for salmon in Southeast Alaska.

Good news for the Taku River and for those, like myself, who sell and eat Southeast Alaska seafood.

Last month, the British Columbia government released a permanent closure and cleanup plan for its long-abandoned and polluting Tulsequah Chief mine. When releasing the plan, B.C. committed almost $1.6 million to start the process.

In tracking this issue for the last five years, I’ve learned that making strides in transboundary waters takes having prominent elected officials on your side.

I especially want to thank Alaska Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan for speaking up for the Taku River in their travels, on the Senate floor and elsewhere. Alaska-side attention to the Taku has done much to finally spur this B.C. action.

The Tulsequah Chief mine sits right on the banks of the Tulsequah River, the largest tributary to the Taku River, only a few miles upstream of the Alaska-B.C. border. The mine has been leaching toxic acid drainage into the Tulsequah River since the 1950s.

For the rest of this column: https://www.juneauempire.com/opinion/opinion-mine-cleanup-plan-is-encouraging-but-theres-still-work-to-be-done/

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