Bristol Bay's Sockeye Salmon Fishery
Bristol Bay's unparalleled sockeye run amounts to some 38 million red salmon returning to this southwest Alaska watershed every summer. The 200+ million lbs of fish harvested by commercial fisherfolk every year employs 14,000 people and generates $1.5 billion in revenue annually. All of this is threatened by a proposed open pit gold and copper mine, known as "Pebble Mine," at the headwaters of Bristol Bay—as well as by rising water temperatures throughout the state as a result of a warming climate.
This story highlights the productivity of the world's biggest sockeye salmon fishery as it faces an uncertain future.
Story originally commissioned with support from the Food and Environment Reporting Network and published in The Nation.