P E BB L E PRO J E C T NE W S L ETTER
Table of Contents
For the third year, the Pebble Partnership participated as one of several sponsors of the Iliamna/Newhalen 2010 Halloween Carnival.
INSIDE Training Enhances Skill
Roughly 80 people turned out to carve, paint and decorate more than 1,300 pounds of pumpkins provided by the Pebble Partnership. Kids of all ages carved their favorite faces into the bright orange gourds with help from members from the Carnival Committee, NIYAC, student government and the high school volleyball team.
Stakeholders Tour Gibraltar Mine Pebble Fund Supports Sustainable Projects Myth Busting Elders Forum Brittany Anelon puts a festive touch on a holiday pumpkin.
Other festivities included face-painting, limbo contests and a best costume parade. Several pumpkins were also donated to the high school as decoration for the fall dance.
Stakeholders Tour Gibraltar Mine and Fraser River Basin In 2010, the Pebble Partnership hosted two stakeholder tours to the Gibraltar Mine, sharing key examples of mining companies that coexist near watersheds carrying similar salmon species as the Bristol Bay Region. The Fraser River Basin recently recorded one of the largest salmon seasons in history. Throughout the past five years, the Partnership has
hosted numerous stakeholders at the Gibraltar Mine, which operates upstream from the Fraser River Basin. Tour groups, which this year included participants from around the region, learn about mining and mill processes, tailings, environmental management, community interaction and more.
Tour participants view the tabling method of an open pit.
Training Enhances Skill An important element of the Pebble Partnershipâ€™s current exploratory program is its commitment to providing employment options regionally and helping to develop business opportunities for locals as the project progresses.
employment opportunities. Supporting these types of training programs in partnership with local business will help develop a highly qualified workforce, while opening new opportunities for business enterprise in the Bristol Bay Region.
Recently, the Pebble Partnership sponsored a skill development series with Iliamna Development Corp. Several employees obtained certification as 100 Ton Marine Masters and qualified for a Commercial Driverâ€™s License (CDL). Individuals receiving commercial driver certification also achieved a Tanker Doubles/ Triples and Hazmat endorsement through the Department of Homeland Security.
Congratulations to the four individuals who successfully completed these training programs: 100 Ton Masters Garrette Anelon Gerald Anelon
CDL Drivers Trefim Andrew Jack Paine
This important milestone is an excellent example of skill development that can lead to long-term and sustainable
Partnership Wraps Summer Season Another busy work season is coming to a close in Iliamna. Season high workforce numbers at site showed a peak day at 138 people, covering a wide variety of capacities. Two drilling programs were completed this year. The first included about 54,000 feet of drilling to continue examining the geology in the Pebble claim block. The second program was specific to collecting engineering/ environmental data in areas of potential mine infrastructure. Engineering work completed this year included sampling and cataloging of overburden test pits, and a seismic refraction survey to estimate the depth of overburden in specific areas of the deposit footprint. One of the more unusual studies conducted in 2010 included a 4,000 line-mile helicopter-borne geophysical survey to provide geologists and engineers with valuable information about the rocks that host the deposit. This particular geophysical system, known as a ZTEM (zee-tem) survey, is able to detect and measure how energy generated by lightning strikes from around the world interacts with the various rock units at the deposit area. This cutting-edge technology is one example of the progressive science and engineering being used to understand the natural environment in which the deposit occurs. Environmental baseline data collection continued at the project site at a reduced rate compared with previous years, due to the vast amount of environmental information compiled to date. Numerous environmental consultants completed work related to fish and fish habitat surveys, groundwater level monitoring and surface water sampling. Bird and mammal studies at the proposed port site along with weather station updates, drill water circulation and sump sample collection continued as in previous years. This information will be compiled into a comprehensive Environmental Baseline Document (EBD) in early 2011. The season wraps with more than 200,000 personnel hours worked at the project site this year, which is supported by a strong safety record.
Drillers at the Pebble deposit tear down a drill rig and prepare for its removal from site. All exploration work is done via helicopter.
Summer tours at the Pebble deposit hosted more than 185 people viewing operations, the proposed deposit site, reclamation crews, various environmental studies and more.
Pebble Fund Supports Sustainable Projects Membership at the center has increased with the upgrades, and feedback from the community has been positive. The increased membership is paying for operating costs and will provide additional funds for future improvements. Bristol Bay Elders Action Group was awarded a fourth $25,000 grant as part of a four-phase project that began in Spring 2009. The grant financed the development of a freezing/holding/distribution center for a food bank benefiting the communities of Naknek, King Salmon and South Naknek.
Wind turbines help power the Renewable Energy Greenhouse in Igiugig.
The Pebble Fund, established to provide a funding avenue for Southwest Alaska communities to develop sustainable community projects, has awarded a second round of grants for 2010. Find a complete list of Pebble Fund grant recipients at www.alaskscf.org. The following is a highlight of several Pebble Fund projects:
The Holy Transfiguration of Our Lord Church in Newhalen was awarded a $25,000 grant in fall 2009. The grant helped to complete the construction of a new church to replace the old facility, which had sustained serious water damage. Volunteers are handling labor, and the interior is nearly finished, including newly painted murals. The Bristol Bay School District is using its $17,000 grant from 2009 for a superefficient diesel project. Drew Larrabee, a local teacher, came across two 1971 VW vans that weren’t running but were repairable. Students are working to repair one van with a super-efficient TDI engine. Follow the class’ reconstruction process at www.alaskabug. blogspot.com.
The Igiugig Tribal Village Council was awarded a $60,072 grant in 2009 to construct a Renewable Energy Greenhouse. As of August 2010, the project has operating wind turbines and a newly constructed greenhouse, which is expected to be fully operational next year. The goal of the greenhouse project is to provide a way for locals to grow healthy produce, have an alternative energy source and potentially provide jobs for sustaining the greenhouse. Bristol Bay’s Center of Attention, in King Salmon, was awarded a $25,000 grant in spring 2010 for gym upgrades. The grant financed work to create two separate rooms, one for aerobic workout and the other for strength training with 10 new stations. The grant also helped make the building more energy-efficient.
Membership at the Bristol Bay Center of Attention has increased with the installation of new workout stations.
Opponents of the proposed Pebble mine are attempting to force an either/or choice between fishing and mining, claiming it’s impossible to successfully benefit from both natural resources.
This past summer, Canada’s Fraser River made history when 34 million salmon fought their way upstream as part of the largest sockeye run in a century. While fishermen competed to haul in this record-breaker, upstream, hundreds of miners worked in two of the world’s largest open-pit copper mines. The Fraser River is an active river with many other user groups illustrating the ability to coexist between industries.
FISH AND MODERN MINING CAN COEXIST
In Alaska, three operating mines have successfully coexisted with fisheries — The Red Dog Mine near Kotzebue, the Fort Knox Mine near Fairbanks and the Greens Creek Mine near Juneau. Historically, the Kennecott Mine operated as a copper mine at the turn of the last century on the Copper River. www.pebblepartnership.com
3201 C Street, Suite 604 Anchorage, AK USA 99503 (907) 339-2600 Toll-free: 1 (877) 450-2600 www.pebblepartnership.com
Elders Offer Insight and Knowledge The second annual Elders Forum, hosted by the Pebble Partnership, was held Sept. 28 - 30 at the Sheraton Hotel in Anchorage. This year, attendance peaked at 55, including two youth participants. Elders representing 12 Bristol Bay communities were in attendance, including 11 attendees from New Stuyahok. A Yupik translator translated the speaker’s presentation into Yupik and the elders’ comments into English. This year, the forum’s focus was to allow elders from the region to gather and discuss their thoughts on Pebble. Two days were spent in thoughtful conversation, answering elders’ questions and listening to their concerns and ideas.
The forum opened with an exercise that allowed elders to describe their vision for their community. One elder from New Stuyahok wrote, “Less drugs or alcohol, children helping elders more often, let kids go to school more, more teachers for children to teach Native ways.” Another elder from Kokhanok wrote, “To keep our subsistence way of life. We would also like to see our community have opportunities for jobs.” A Newhalen elder hoped for her village “to get better, kids to have a better life and good jobs by going to school.” Other presentations to the group included a Pebble Project update, an overview of the permitting process, subsistence and traditional knowledge studies. Elders share community visions at second annual Elders Forum.
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