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EPA exercises its right under the Clear Water Act and vetoes a mining project in Alaska that’s detrimental to the salmon and indigenous communities.

The Environmental Protection Agency blocked Pebble Mine, a mining project that caused concerns over adverse effects on salmon in Alaska, especially Bristol Bay.

According to CNN, this would have become North America’s largest copper, gold, and molybdenum extraction site. EPA doesn’t often use its authority granted by the Clean Water ACT. This is only the 14th time the EPA has exercised this authority.

Bristol Bay is home to the world’s largest sockeye salmon fishery and 25 indigenous communities which rely on salmon for substance.

“The Bristol Bay watershed is a vital economic driver, providing jobs, sustenance, and significant ecological and cultural value to the region,” EPA Administrator Michael Regan said in a statement. “With this action, EPA is advancing its commitment to help protect this one-of-a-kind ecosystem, safeguard an essential Alaskan industry, and preserve the way of life for more than two dozen Alaska Native villages.”

The ban also refers to future proposals to construct a mine with the same or higher levels of danger for animals or aquatic resources. 

Their decision has been opposed by several state officials, including the Republican Alaska Governor, Mike Dunleavy, and several Alaska officials as well.

Marina is passionate about sustainability and works to help ensure our planet stays as our home for a long time. She takes part in environmental conservation by recycling and not buying single-use plastic.

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