Alaska’s Pebble Mine opposition is feeling a little miffed right now. Word is out that Gov. Sean Parnell has named Ben Mohr as his “fisheries advisor.” A big deal? Well, if you factor in that Mohr spent six years representing the fisherman’s biggest enemy, the Pebble Mine project.
You can only assume how this news is being received in the Last Frontier:
The Anchorage Daily News/Alaska Dispatch
This is the time of year year when the governor appoints people to official positions. Parnell is delivering a couple of real doozies. In searching high and low (especially low) for a fisheries advisor, the governor landed on the six-year spokesmodel for the Pebble mine project, a guy named Ben Mohr. You know Pebble, the project that plans to build a giant poison lake at the headwaters of Alaska’s most productive salmon rivers. Mohr is definitely a guy you want making policy to ensure the health of our fisheries for the next millennium.
In 2011, the governor appointed Mohr to the board of directors of the Alaska Humanities Forum because … well, I have no idea. Good grooming comes to mind.
Yes, the guy who pimped Pebble and then worked as campaign manager for Ohio’s golden boy, Dan Sullivan, is now advising the governor on fisheries policy. Good thing we care so little about our fish that we’re comfortable letting political hacks manage them.
Alaska Governor Sean Parnell’s recent selection of the next fisheries advisor is likely to leave some scratching their heads.
He appointed Ben Mohr, who worked for the Pebble Partnership and worked for years as a Pebble Partnership employee, reports Fish Radio.
“Alaskans overwhelmingly oppose the Pebble Mine, yet Parnell has done everything in his power to push this mine through the permitting process and wreak havoc on Bristol Bay’s valuable fishery,” Kay Brown, executive director of the Alaska Democratic Party, said.
Ben Mohr has been appointed by Parnell to replace Stephanie Moreland. Mohr worked six years as a spokesperson for the Pebble Partnership. He also has worked as a campaign manager for Dan Sullivan, the candidate for U.S. Senate who previously pushed for Pebble mine as DNR Commissioner.
Northern Dynasty is attempting to develop a copper, molybdenum, and gold deposit on state land despite peer-reviewed scientific studies finding that the mine would negatively impact salmon in Bristol Bay. Local Lake and Peninsula Borough residents passed an ordinance opposing Pebble Mine, and public opinion polls show overwhelming bipartisan opposition to the project.
Ben Mohr is just the latest controversial appointment of Parnell’s.
And that’s the way it is on a Thursday in Alaska.