Resource Development Council

RDC Comment Letter:
Wishbone Hill HIA

June 14, 2012

Commissioner William Steur
Department of Health and Social Services
Division of Public Health, Epidemiology
3601 C Street, Suite #540
Anchorage, AK 99503

Re: Wishbone Hill Health Impact Assessment

Dear Commissioner Steur:

The Resource Development Council (RDC) is writing to express disappointment with the unprecedented and potentially damaging health impact assessment (HIA) exercise conducted on the Wishbone Hill coal mine project.

RDC is a statewide business association comprised of individuals and companies from Alaska’s oil and gas, mining, forest products, tourism and fisheries industries. RDC’s membership includes Alaska Native Corporations, local communities, organized labor, and industry support firms. RDC’s purpose is to encourage a strong, diversified private sector in Alaska and expand the state’s economic base through the responsible development of our natural resources.

The HIA conducted on Wishbone Hill creates regulatory uncertainty and could set a dangerous precedent for projects in Alaska, as well as confusion about the assessment outcomes.

As you are aware, the State of Alaska Department of Natural Resources enforces stringent regulations overseeing mining activities statewide that effectively protect the environment, wildlife, and human health.

Please provide a consistent permitting process for projects in Alaska. Thank you for the opportunity to comment on this important issue.

Resource Development Council for Alaska, Inc.