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Reader in favor of Pebble Mine

Posted: September 28, 2011 - 10:05am

I favor the Pebble Mine. When I first visited Kenai to work a shutdown in 1972, I told my wife this was like going back to Iowa in the 1940’s where we grew up. Shortage of phones, roads, electricity; but with the oil pipe line, the whole state has been blessed with the availability of all of them.

We were blessed with the ability to travel, after quitting work because of health. We spent 14 years in campgrounds in Arizona. Eight years in a campground about 2 miles from one of the big holes in the ground.  The other 6 years within 5 miles of this hole; no problems.  We also spent a month at a time in a park in Green Valley, Ariz., where there was an operating big hole mine within 5 miles of the town of approximately 40,000 retires living there and this mine was above the town and valley. Never an incident.

A great experience, since most of my life was manufacturing chemicals, was a tour of the mine at Silver City, N.M., a mine which had been operating many years as it became a hole 1 1/2 miles long and 1/2-mile wide. A tour van took our group down into the pit and we saw blasting of the walls so the huge loaders could fill the  trucks which hauled it out of the mine. We observed the leaching area where they sprayed chemicals on the rock to help release the metals, completely done over a hillside covered with vinyl or acid proof material and the liquid would be returned to the unit which processed it, reclaimed the acid and returned it to be used again.  We also had a tour of the smelter area and watched ingots of copper being poured.  There were other big holes in Arizona but one huge one we came upon was in B.C., Canada.  I have no idea how large it was, but huge.

After World War II, we didn’t get electricity until I was 14 years old and my 18 years living on a farm, never had running water, indoor bath facilities, but if it wasn’t for all the big holes in the ground, it would have been much longer.  With the shortage of copper and the good price, it appears to me that if the state took royalties from it and put the money in the Permanent Fund when the government stops the drilling for oil, it might be a little help in the future.  One industry, fishing, cannot support the operations of a state and I personally feel after 35 years of dealing with the EPA and the government’s way of stopping development, the mine would help.

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robert white
378
Points
robert white 09/28/11 - 10:41 am
0
0
pebble mine

Paul, do you think useing cyanide leaching in an earthquake zone on top of a natural resource such as bristol bay is a smart idea and worth the risk? I would incourage you to make a trip to McCarthy and take a look at what the kennecott mine did to the valley, It isn't pretty....

Alaskan4Gen
0
Points
Alaskan4Gen 09/28/11 - 01:19 pm
0
0
McCarthy Kennecott Mine

The devastation caused by the Kennecott Mine is so bad that my family and thousands of others have chosen McCarthy as one of our premier weekend destinations over the last 40 or so years. The only point I can agree with Robert on is that you should make the trip to McCarthy. I'd suggest you do it soon, before Bob Gilliam buys some property there and has all the public roads and bridges shut down.

AKMaineIac
14
Points
AKMaineIac 09/30/11 - 07:37 am
0
0
Pebble

I've been watching this issue since 2008 when I worked in Homer. There are many good and intelligent people on both sides of the issue actually. Asking questions about Kennecott Mine in regards to Pebble is like asking about the Wright brothers at Kitty Hawk when discussing flying outside with Alaska Airlines or any of the other carriers out of Alaska or Fairbanks. Honest debate based on ration and logic is the only way the issue can truly ever been settled to the satisfaction of most people. There is a minority of people who will never be satisfied, because they do not engage in rational consideration of anything outside of their experience zone or knowledge. That's on both sides... some can not conceive of not going forward with the mine, others can not conceive of going forward with it. There is no satisfying either group of people.

northernlights
214
Points
northernlights 09/30/11 - 01:30 pm
0
0
Not just Kennecot, check out Nome

To this day, there are old dredges stuck right in the middle of rivers that once produced fish. They not only dredged and totaly destroyed the rivers but they left the machinery in them. rolling hills and valleys destroyed. endless miles of land and rivers destroyed. Honestly, the PFD is fantastic, I am able to catch up on my much needed bills, but the PFD had a bad down size to it, many many people have flocked here only for the money. I am afraid that if the PFD grew anymore than it is now, we would be flooded with people, more people, more crime, I live here because I love living in a small town, raised three children here and watching the grandchildren grow. My spouse and I came here to work, theres was no PFD at that time. Our motivation was not what we could receive but how we could live a life with an abundance of beauty and wildlife. Sadly throughout the years, we are on the sidelines of seeing greed destroying the Kenai river, beaches are producing small tiny clams and so on. This is still a land of opportunity, still a beautiful place, but such as Nome and Kennecott, they will never be the same, they took their money and ran and left behind, devestation.

ziggyak
82
Points
ziggyak 10/02/11 - 08:22 am
0
0
Sad when a Frontier state shuts down

The last frontier is dead and gone comparing the Pebble mine to mines from a hundred years ago or even 30 - 40 years ago is the height of stupidity. Can't we see the plans for this project before we say it won't work? Yes I want to protect the environment but I want my kids to work good jobs not box store minimum wages. The only way we can grow as a state is through resource development. Yes make the miners and oil companies develop good workable plans and hold them to it. But if we as a state lease lands for mineral development (including oil) and don't do all we can to get those leases operational then shame on us.

robert white
378
Points
robert white 10/02/11 - 09:38 am
0
0
pebble

ziggyak, cyanide leaching was developed in Scotland near the end of the 19 century and first used by George Hearst at his Homestake Mining Comp, in 1899.Point being it is not new technology and it is very distructive to the enviroment. I understand that there is technology today to separate the fine gold without the cyanide process but it cuts into profit... The height of stupidity would be to take a chance with such old technology in such a sensitive area!!

spwright
1376
Points
spwright 10/03/11 - 08:48 am
0
0
Don't Know Who to Believe ?

Mon. 10/3/11
To be Brutally Honest, I don't know WHO to believe when it comes to the Pebble Mine issue.

A Mega Millionaire that spends Big Bucks to turn People against the Mine. Frankly I would NOT Trust anyone from "Wall Street" & claims to Love Alaska .

Or the Mine Corporation telling Us that Mining & Fishing can co-exist together.

The "Fish Huggers" are against any form of Development & it's always Not in My Back Yard issue for them.

But I don't believe that the Alaska Permitting Process has been allowed to completed.

& both sides rant & rave about How Bad the Other Side is.
Who do You Believe ?

SPW in Slooooooooooowdotna

aksumfun
0
Points
aksumfun 10/13/11 - 07:24 pm
0
0
How stupid I may be;

When people resort to calling people stupid and all kinds of other things, It makes me suspect of their intentions. I will put my resumee besides any one elses; My training started in the Navy and qualified me to operate an engine room on a 600 ft repair ship. Went to work in a Chemical plant and spent 8 years operating different Units; Helped start up 3 new plants. Went to College and became a certified welder, pipe fitter, boilermaker & crane operator. In 28 years as a mechanic I would estimate that the men I worked with installed Many million of dollars of environmental equipment.
Some necessary and some not so much. Some times a person has to look at the Plus and Minus side of things which they are doing. I will sign my name because I am proud of it; I do not need some alias; Paul D. Morrison

cheapersmokes
833
Points
cheapersmokes 01/06/12 - 12:41 pm
0
0
Take a CHILL Pill

Folks, It's about time for everyone to idle down on all of the rhetoric on this issue and let the permitting process look at the matter with hopefully an unbiased eye and make their decision. Hopefully someone will keep a very close watch over the members bank accounts and assets so they cannot be paid off. Let's also hope that the owners know that they will be setting the standard for all future mining permits based on how they uphold their environmental responsibilities and they actually care about that!

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