The EPA’s second draft Bristol Bay Watershed Assessment isn’t gaining any favor with the Pebble Partnership. Mike Heatwole, VP of the Pebble Partnership’s Public Affairs said the federal review of the watershed is based on a straw man argument.
Heatwole: “One of the major issues really is: why rush to get something like this out before a project has even been defined and rolled into the permitting process? That’s why we have a permitting process, so that the science that’s out there can take a look at things and you have a prescribed process that projects have to go through and that’s where it’s evaluated and people take their time, ask a lot of questions, including a very public process through all of that, and that clearly hasn’t happened here.”
Heatwole said the Partnership will now take the remainder of the 30-day public comment period to study the document and submit their comments. He said it would be interesting to see how (or if) the EPA takes public comment into consideration.