Bristol Bay and Beyond, Dec 12

Dec 26, 2014

A longtime Bristol Bay resident passes, Pebble and EPA haggle in federal court, a visit to the Ekwok School, an update on Wood River Bridge, and that pool in Bethel.

Dillingham City Dock on a December day.
Credit Clark Fair

On this week's show, we speak with Heather Kendall Miller about developments in an ongoing lawsuit filed by Pebble against EPA, and Robin Samuelson shares thoughts on the passing of Jack Moores. Thea Card visits the Wood River Bridge, I stop by the school in Ekwok, and our friend Ben Matheson tells us how the pool in Bethel is coming along. Plus Gabe Dunham drops by for a look at fish industry news, and more.

We learned today that long time Bristol Bay resident Jack Moores has passed away. Robin Samuelson spoke with us earlier to share some thoughts:

Federal Judge Russel Holland granted the Pebble Limited Partnership a temporary injunction against the EPA’s actions on the Bristol Bay watershed. This is part of Pebble’s second case in federal court against EPA, and has been interpreted by some as something of a setback for the agency’s efforts to block mine development north of Iliamna.

Heather Kendall Miller

Earlier this week I spoke with attorney Heather Kendall Miller, who represents the United Tribes of Bristol Bay, one of the groups leading the opposition to Pebble. Heather, thanks for speaking with us:

The approach to the temporary bridge sits quiet on a December day.
Credit Thea Card, KDLG

The Wood River Bridge connecting Dillingham to Aleknagik is coming together on schedule, even with a winter break. We sent Thea Card up to take a look recently, and she brought us this report:

I traveled to Ekwok this week, courtesy of an extra seat chartered by the Bristol Bay Economic Development Corporation. I was hoping to get an eye on two new road projects, one going out to the landfill, and another that heads out to Blueberry Hill. On the short visit, I missed the chance for a tour of those projects, but there were other things that caught my eye in the village.

Let’s look at a third project, this one to our north a bit. The long-awaited pool in Bethel finally opened this fall, then was immediately shut back down for a variety of unfortunate mechanical reasons and code violations. But that didn’t stop the community from finding clever work arounds to get their $25 million dream come true back open.

Living the dream come true in Bethel.
Credit KYUK

Ben Matheson is a reporter at KYUK in Bethel and has been following along this fall. Hi Ben, thanks for joining us:

Back to talk with us again to talk news in the fishing industry is Bristol Bay Marine Advisory Program Agent Gabe Dunham:

  Follow along by clicking "like" on the Bristol Bay Marine Advisory Program page on facebook.

We'll leave you with a short song from Dillingham 4th graders who held their annual Christmas concert Thursday afternoon: