Sponsored by Environmental Studies
Luther College will host a screening of the award-winning documentary "Red Gold" and a discussion session about a proposal to operate an open pit copper mine that could damage the eco-system of Bristol Bay, Alaska, which is the world's largest sockeye salmon fishery.
The "Red Gold" program will be Wednesday, March 28, 7:30 p.m. in Room 206 of Valders Science Hall on the Luther campus. The event is open to the public with no charge for admission.
The post-film discussion will feature three advocates for environmental protection for Bristol Bay. Jeff Skrade, a resident of La Crosse, Wis., is a retired biologist with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game and now fleet manager for Peter Pan Seafoods.
Bristol Bay residents Dave Egdorf, a guide with a sport fishing fly-out operation, and Curt Olson, a commercial fisherman, rancher and auctioneer, will also take part in the discussion. Both men are featured in the film.
The eastern-most arm of the Bering Sea, Bristol Bay is bordered on the south by the Alaska Peninsula. In addition to its importance as the largest sockeye salmon fishery, Bristol Bay is home to strong runs of chum salmon, silver salmon and king salmon.
The bay's major industries of commercial fishing and its associated canneries are complemented by sport fishing, hunting and tourism.
The southwest Alaska area bordering Bristol Bay is of interest to oil and mineral mining corporations, including a the proposed Pebble Mine on the north shore of Iliamna Lake. Companies are pursuing auctioning of mineral leases on tracts in the southern Bristol Bay area known as the North Aleutians Basin, which has been closed to offshore oil and gas development since a moratorium in 1998.
The draft plan by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management would open most of the BLM's 3.6 million acres in the area to hard rock mining and oil and gas drilling.
Bristol Bay commercial fishermen, Alaska natives and sport fishing guides who make their living from the fisheries and bay's waters seek to protect the area's natural resources.
Questions? Contact Jon Jensen Ph.D., 563-387-1696