It’s less than three days since I returned from a two-week concert and festival tour of Alaska sponsored by Musicians United To Protect Bristol Bay, the international network I helped found to harness the collective power of grassroots and grassroots musicians (like all of us in Local 1000) in pursuit of a better and more just world.
I was determined to release my18th album Bristol Bay in fishing communities on the Bay itself, to honor the hard-working people who told me the stories from which I wove the songs. I also wanted to get everyone within listening range to send comments to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, asking the EPA to continue their strong stand against construction of the Pebble Mine, which if built will threaten everything Bristol Bay is and stands for.
I returned home to discover (via a June 17th article in The Washington Post) that billionaire conservative activists the Koch Brothers are pouring money into trying to pack the EPA with comments in favor of the Pebble Mine.
Alaska’s Bristol Bay is home to 46% of the world’s remaining wild sockeye salmon, millions of other wild fish, a pristine ecosystem and Alaska Native Yup’ik villages that have been on the same river sites for over 10,000 years. The Pebble Partnership wants to dig an “open pit” copper and gold mine close the headwaters of two of the Bay’s most abundant rivers. The Pebble Mine will create a 10 square mile “pond” which is supposed to contain in perpetuity the up to 10 billion tons of toxic sludge the mine will produce.
We can’t let the power of conservative money win this critical fight. Please ask your listeners to go to www.MusiciansUnited.info, hit the large button that says TELL EPA, and let the EPA know how they feel.
From my heart, thanks.