Eco-Activists Target Another Alaska Mineral Project

Eco-Activists Target Another Alaska Mineral Project

October 4, 2023

For nearly two decades, Alaska’s Pebble Mine has been the subject of an unrelenting, high-stakes and well-coordinated attack, with hundreds of millions of dollars being spent to thwart the development of $1 trillion in copper, gold, rhenium and molybdenum assets.

Pebble’s opponents have enlisted the help of celebrities and politicians to fight Pebble, but its most effective tactic was to infiltrate local Native villages – some, hundreds of miles away from the proposed mine – spend large sums of money in the name of philanthropy, then use their new-found influence to spread fear about Pebble to community leaders.  Once they had them on their side, entire villages signed up to oppose the project.

Now, with Pebble on-hold due to the Biden Administration’s EPA preemptively vetoing the clean water provisions of the project, the activists have turned their attention to another large-scale project.

The proposed Donlin Mine is located upriver from the community of Bethel.  The Kuskokwim River connects many of the 50+ villages in the region, and the activists – including Earthjustice and Cook Inletkeeper – have used the River as the basis for ingratiating themselves to various village leaders, using its ‘inevitable’ poisoning of the water as the fear tactic to oppose Donlin.

The latest of at least four separate court challenges, as reported by the Anchorage Daily News, opposes State of Alaska authorizations of Donlin’s water discharge plans.  Filed by Earthjustice on behalf of three villages in the area, it seeks to stop development in its tracks.

Power The Future has traveled throughout Alaska, speaking with villagers closest to some of the largest potential projects.  We have heard firsthand how jobs could positively impact their communities, how the developments would bring hope to the areas and how project owners have worked extensively with local residents to address their concerns.

We’ll continue to follow the Donlin story, in hopes that the courts rule in the favor of the state, Donlin’s developers and logic, and against fear-over-facts narratives being pushed by those who continue to fight against Alaska’s bright energy future.