“We Welcome a Review” –Pebble Fights Back

“We Welcome a Review” –Pebble Fights Back

August 14, 2020

Earlier this week, Congressional Democrats in the House Committee on Oversight and Reform called for a review of the permitting process for the Pebble Mine by one or more of the Inspectors General of the Department of Defense and/or US Army. In doing so, they alleged a number of errors and process inadequacies were made or overlooked by the US Army Corps of Engineers during their work under the NEPA process.  These included rushing the timeline, ignoring comments from key constituencies and that Pebble’s lobbying efforts somehow tainted the Corps’ decisions.

If the Committee thought that was going to scare Northern Dynasty, the owners of the project, they misread that situation entirely.

In a response to the Inspector General offices, Tom Collier, Pebble’s CEO, was clear:

“Despite believing it to be unnecessary and many of the allegations raised as baseless, we welcome a review of USACE’s actions to date and pledge our cooperation. We are confident in the sufficiency and completeness of our technical work. We believe the USACE has undertaken a thorough, transparent and credible environmental review of the Pebble Project. Our support for an IG review is rooted in the notion that it will put to rest many incorrect statements about Pebble that have permeated the public conversation about our project.”

The rest of Collier’s letter dealt with destroying the Committee’s arguments one by one.  Providing factual information, rather than the assumptions made by the Committee, Collier laid out how the Corps had indeed not only followed the NEPA process to the letter, but was more lenient than necessary with public comment periods and other stakeholder engagements.

With Pebble’s Record of Decision coming in a month or so, and calls from eco-extremists to have the EPA veto the project, having a solid, proactive response from Pebble was exciting to see.

Power The Future will continue to provide updates on Pebble’s fight to open and provide 1,000 good-paying jobs in an area of Alaska that could sorely use it.