Opinion: Pebble Mine brings development to Native villages

CEO of Pebble Partnership says controversial Pebble Mine will help Alaska Native villages:
What bothers me most is the incomplete picture that many have painted when talking about the economics of the area. I recognize that some Alaskans and some local residents participate in the commercial fishery. However, if the commercial fishing industry is the foundation of a vibrant economy for "a place that's always been," I have the following questions for those who say, "No Pebble, No way":

Why did two villages located on Bristol Bay have their schools close last year because they did not have the 10 students required by state law, and why are there a number of other villages in the region facing the same fate?

Why is the population of the region in decline -- 10 percent in the Lake and Peninsula Borough, 25 percent in Nondalton and 44 percent in Levelock alone according to the 2010 U.S. Census?

Why are some commercial fishers supporting the idea of having the state of Alaska buy back permits in the fishery?

Why did a survey conducted by the leading social and business organizations in the region show that people identified alcohol, drug abuse and domestic violence more often than any other problem that they are concerned about?

Get the Story:
John Shively: Pebble may serve to sustain Southwest Alaska, along with fishing (The Anchorage Daily News 7/20)

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