Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - A lawsuit has been filed in Anchorage Federal District Court challenging the way the Bureau of Land Management in the U. S. Department of Interior has decided to permit exploration by a Canadian mining company in the Chilkat Watershed.
The Southeast Alaska Conservation Council is party to the legal action. SEACC Staff Scientist Guy Archibald was among the guests on Action Line Thursday.
He says the legal action challenges the agency's failure to consider the cumulative impact of future mine development at Constantine Metals' Palmer Project. That project involves ongoing exploration activities in the watershed directly upstream of Haines and Klukwan and just a couple of miles from the Bald Eagle Reserve on the Kleheni River, a major tributary of the Chilkat River..
The Chilkat Indian village of Klukwan, Rivers Without Borders, Lynn Canal Conservation, and Earth Justice have joined SEACC in the legal action.
In a related move, SEACC has called for adding the Chilkat River to the 2015 Memorandum of Understanding between the State of Alaska and British Columbia that addresses protection of transboundary waters.