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Risk of mining to salmon-bearing watersheds - a new peer-reviewed study in Science Advances

This newly published study is the first-ever comprehensive summary of the impacts of mining on salmon and trout in northwestern North America highlighting opportunities to improve the application of science to mining policy and governance. 



Citation: Sergeant, C. J., E. K. Sexton, J. W. Moore, A. R. Westwood, S. A. Nagorski, J. L. Ebersole, D. M. Chambers, S. L. O’Neal, R. L. Malison, F. R. Hauer, D. C. Whited, J. Weitz, J. Caldwell, M. Capito, M. Connor, C. A. Frissell, G. Knox, E. D. Lowery, R. Macnair, V. Marlatt, J. K. McIntyre, M. V. McPhee, N. Skuce. Risks of mining to salmonid-bearing watersheds. Science Advances8, eabn0929.


In northwestern North America, a new rush of mining exploration and production is underway. At the same time, the U.S. and Canada are spending billions to clean up past and present mines. The scale of proposed mines continues to increase and presents a complicated suite of cumulative effects to the environment. In particular, mining can harm fish such as Chinook salmon and bull trout, which are important economic drivers for many communities and culturally important resources for Indigenous Peoples.


This paper highlights key windows where mining policy could be strengthened by science in the U.S. and Canada among federal, state (AK, MT, ID, and WA), provincial (Y.T., B.C.), and First Nations and Tribal entities.

Photo Credit: Fernando Lessa

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