Amendment would stop a flawed, fast-tracked permitting process for Pebble Mine.
The U.S. House today passed a rider to the Energy and Water Appropriations bill that would halt for one year the permitting process for Pebble Mine.
The measure, introduced by a steadfast salmon champion, Rep. Jared Huffman of California, comes as the Army Corps of Engineers fast tracks Pebble’s permitting process. It has allowed Pebble Partnership and consultants to cut every scientific and statistical corner possible in the development of its permitting materials—all to expedite what appears to be a predetermined permit approval for the controversial copper and gold mine in Bristol Bay. Wild Salmon Center documented this questionable process in a recent report.
“This permitting process simply can’t be trusted,” said Guido Rahr, president and CEO of the Wild Salmon Center. ” The Army Corps of Engineers is racing to give permits to a foreign company to open up Bristol Bay — home to the world’s largest salmon runs — to large scale gold and copper mining. The agency has circumvented standard practice and ignored critical input from leading scientists and other key agencies.
“Congress has the right to assert its oversight authority over federal agencies and their political appointees, investigate what’s going on and step in when necessary to uphold our laws. We thank Congressman Huffman and those members who voted to take that important step today.”
The Army Corps comment period on Pebble is open until July 1.
Meanwhile, the Pebble debate on Capitol Hill now turns to the Senate, which will take up Energy and Water Appropriations in the coming months.