By BECKY BOHRER
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) – Critics of a mine planned near headwaters of a major Alaska salmon fishery are suing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, saying EPA improperly withdrew proposed restrictions on development in that region.
An EPA spokeswoman says the agency typically doesn’t comment on litigation.
Under the Obama administration, EPA proposed restrictions on development in the Bristol Bay region but never finalized them.
A 2017 settlement agreement between EPA and the developer of the proposed Pebble Mine called for EPA to initiate a process for withdrawing the proposed restrictions.
The EPA later halted that effort, saying it had serious concerns about the impacts of mining in the region and wanted more information.
Then, earlier this year, EPA withdrew the proposed restrictions, saying they were outdated, a move that angered mine opponents.