The EPA will not Extend Deadline for Public Comment on Bristol Bay

The Environmental Protection Agency will not extend the public comment period for it's assessment of the Bristol Bay watershed.

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by Megan Mazurek

The Environmental Protection Agency will not extend the public comment period for it's assessment of the Bristol Bay watershed.
Pebble Limited Partnership had requested an extension to the 60 day comment period.
The Bristol Bay Native Corporation says it commends the EPA's decision to stay on track with their deadline and says the time frame was long enough to allow Alaskans to weigh in on the draft assessment and the likely impacts of a large scale mining operation.
Hearings for the Draft Bristol Bay Watershed Assessment were held in Seattle, Anchorage and villages within the Bristol Bay region.
The assessment found a mine in the Bristol Bay watershed would have negative environmental impacts to the region and its salmon runs.
BBNC Officials say the state of Alaska uses much shorter comment periods when they provide public input on a decision.
"Those comment periods are routinely much shorter than 66 days 30 days 45 days sometimes 60 days," said Dan Cheyette, BBNC Natural Resource Attorney. "This comment period is equal or greater to the comment periods that are routinely used for action decisions and again this is just a planning document."
The deadline for the watershed assessment comment period is July 23rd.

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