Daily DrakeRed Chris

Red ChrisWith digging underway, Canada’s latest mine has become the newest concern for Alaska’s wild fish advocates. Last week, an open-pit gold-and-copper producer called Red Chris began operating in the British Columbia headwaters of the Stikine River, an undammed waterway that flows more than 400 miles, crossing borders and spilling into an 11,000-hectare delta near Wrangell, AK.


At the core of the budding cross-boundary dispute? The fact that mine operator, Imperial Metals, is the same force behind last year’s burst tailings pond that spewed some 25 million cubic meters of toxic sludge into B.C.’s Fraser River.

“Over the last decade, the Canadian government has expedited a mining boom in western British Columbia by rolling back one environmental regulation after another. The Navigable Waters Protection Act, for example, once protected more than a million Canadian rivers and 32,000 lakes. As of 2012, that number was down to just 66, leaving some of British Columbia’s wildest, richest and largest rivers exempt from environmental safeguards.”

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Tom Bie is the founder, editor, and publisher of The Drake. He started the magazine in 1998 as an annual newsprint publication based in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. He then moved it to Steamboat, Colorado (1999), Boulder, Colorado (2001), and San Clemente, California (2004), as he took jobs as managing editor at Paddler, Senior Editor at Skiing, and Editor-in-Chief at Powder, respectively. Tom and The Drake are now both based in Denver, Colorado, where The Drake is finally all grows up(Swingers, 1996) to a quarterly magazine.

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