Bristol Bay, Alaska is home to one of the last great salmon fisheries on the planet. The salmon, wildlife, people and fishing jobs of this beautiful and productive region are threatened by the proposed Pebble gold and copper mine. If built, Pebble could become the largest mine in North America.
Right now, we have an unprecedented opportunity to stop this mine and protect Bristol Bay's fish and jobs through the Clean Water Act. But we need your help.
TAKE A BAG FISHING
Carl L. Wuebben
How would you feel if you were going your favorite stream, creek, lake or even salt water area only to find it totally trashed with cups, wrappers, cans, bottles, old ice chests, broken folding chairs, discarded fishing line, etc. You find the fish were choking on the trash and debris and the flows were disrupted by the small dams people made for their swimming hole for the day. It would make you feel quite angry wouldn’t it? If only we could effectively convey the importance of picking up after themselves or they can pay the Molly Maids® to clean up after them (which won’t happen any time soon.)
Until we can come up with a better solution, one suggestion may be for everybody to bring a trash bag with them fishing. It doesn’t have to be a huge 55 gallon bag, maybe a 15 gallon or just a couple of grocery bags, and pick up a few things while walking from place to place and carry it out with you to a trash can in the parking lot. Better yet, take with you in the trunk of your vehicle and dump off at the closest dumpster. If everybody pitched in just a little bit it won’t get to be this bad and yes I know what you are saying is “it’s not my trash why should I pick up after others?” Well my answer to that is WE ONLY HAVE ONE PLANET EARTH and if everybody just says “I’ll let someone else pick it up”, then nobody will pick it up and our fisheries will be choked out - the fish will die off and our drinking water will taste and look disgusting.
So please pitch in and help out. Perhaps when you pass a few people that may need a trash bag or two, give one to them and tell them if they could pack out what they brought in, then the place would look a lot better and maybe you would have put a thought in their head to pick up after themselves and others without thinking that it’s not their job to clean up things.
It is our job to clean up and preserve our beautiful fishing spots. So grab your fishing gear and trash bags and pitch in. Maybe even print this article out and give it to a few people to help get the word out. If you take a photo of yourself and your trash bag(s) send it to me! If you find the place is really bad, it may be an opportunity to set up a stream clean up.