I am writing to address inaccuracies about Seabridge Gold’s KSM Project published in the Letter to the Editor titled “Mining industry claims don’t hold water.”
In this letter, Greg Knox from SkeenaWild Conservation Trust incorrectly stated the proposed tailings management facility of the KSM Project (which received environmental approvals from the federal, provincial and Nisga’a governments in 2014) is located near Sulphurets Creek, a tributary of the transboundary Unuk River, emptying into Southeast Alaska. The KSM’s TMF is located in the Bell Irving watershed which drains into the Nass River and does not enter U.S. coastal waters.
An important omission in his letter is the significant public support the KSM Project has within local communities. Seabridge Gold has entered into benefits agreements with the Nisga’a and Tahltan Nations, signed an environmental agreement with the Gitanyow Wilps, and the Gitxsan Hereditary Chiefs have endorsed the Project with a letter of support for the environmental assessment approval.
We would also like to highlight the KSM Project has been through extensive environmental and technical evaluations to ensure its operation will not cause harm to the surrounding environment, including waterways and fish. Seabridge has worked closely with Alaskans, to ensure that their concerns around the KSM Project were acknowledged and addressed throughout the environmental assessment review. This fact was highlighted within the Canadian Federal Government’s Independent Comprehensive Study Report which stated:
“The Agency is satisfied that identified mitigation measures for the Project would address potential impacts in Alaska on fish; recreational and commercial fisheries and human health from changes to water quality and quantity in the Unuk River.”
• R. Brent Murphy is senior vice president, environmental affairs, for Seabridge Gold.