On March 24, a group of Yukon mining industry representatives met with the Haines Ports and Harbors Committee and the Haines Chamber of Commerce to discuss their desire to ship ore through Lutak Inlet. They asked if our community will embrace them.
This meeting occurred without public notice. The Canadian mining industry got to weigh in on their vision for Lutak Dock before the latest scheme was even presented to our community. They told our Ports and Harbors Committee what they need in order to ship their dirty ore through our community. They didn’t even stick around for the public comment period to hear whether or not we will embrace them. You can read all about it in the Chilkat Valley News.
Now, it’s time for us to speak up and say no. We will not embrace the Yukon’s dirty ore.
The Haines Borough Planning Commission is holding a public hearing this Thursday, April 7, at 6:30 p.m. to vote on whether to approve the latest combined three-phase conceptual design for Lutak Dock. The Phase III design has changed since last year’s public meetings. Members of the public will have three minutes to testify. Please make your voice heard.
Our community has rallied to reject ore shipments in the past. We raised enough ruckus last year when the Borough was meeting with Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority (AIDEA) to discuss an ore terminal that proponents have learned not to say the words, “ore terminal.” Whatever you call it, transporting ore through the Chilkat Valley and the townsite and loading it onto ships in Lutak Inlet presents risks of ore spills, fugitive dust, and a massive increase in industrial traffic on Haines Highway, in the townsite, and Lutak Road.
Tell the Planning Commission to slow this process down, and vet the latest concept through the community. Tell them the discussion on Lutak Dock development must happen in the open, with public notice, prioritizing our community’s well-being over foreign mining interests. Tell them we will not embrace the Yukon mining industry’s dirty ore.
Thank you for standing up for our community! Democracy is an ongoing process, and we’ll be asking you to weigh in again as this process unfolds. Let’s make sure the Borough listens to our community, rather than doing the Canadian mining industry’s bidding.
Shannon Donahue, Upper Lynn Canal Organizer