There are few places left in the United States as pristine and untouched as Alaska’s Chuitna Watershed. Nestled between the Cook Inlet and the rugged Tordrillo Mountain Range, the Chuitna is an unspoiled wilderness that is home to brown and black bear, fox, moose, beaver, and waterfowl. In a world where wild salmon stocks have been depleted by over-exploitation and habitat loss, the Chuitna remains one of the world’s last salmon strongholds and boasts abundant runs of all five species of wild Pacific salmon, which supports vibrant commercial, subsistence, and recreational fishing.
It is at the headwaters of this rarest-of-rare salmon system that PacRim Coal has proposed developing Alaska’s largest coal strip mine and export facility. This project would create a 300-foot deep pit through as much as 13.7 miles of salmon stream, setting a dangerous precedent as the first coal mine in Alaska to mine directly through a salmon stream. The project’s extensive infrastructure would also open the 33 billion ton Susitna-Beluga Coal Field and transform this wilderness into a major low-grade coal export facility for Asian markets.
All of this would be done at a huge cost to Alaskans, who would face nearly six dollars in losses from missed economic opportunities and reclamation costs for every dollar generated by taxes, royalties, and job creation. The only thing standing in the way of PacRim Coal accomplishing this horrific feat is the growing outcry of concerned citizens and organizations working to convince the government that this critical watershed is no place for a massive coal strip mine and export facility.
Join the effort to save the Chuitna by texting “Salmon” to 877877. As the campaign unfolds, you will be notified when it is time to speak up and help save the Chuitna.
The film was produced by the talented folks at Balance Media. Stay tuned for Episode 2 coming soon…