Suction Dredge Mining Reform Update

SACRAMENTO, 19 April 2013 – There has been considerable action over the last few weeks around suction dredge mining reform, as CA Department of Fish and Wildlife worked to fill its requirement to work with other agencies and produce a report to the CA Legislature.

As part of legislation passed in 2012, DFW (formerly Dept. of Fish and Game) was directed to consult with other agencies with a potential role in regulating the impacts of suction dredge mining, such as the Water Board, Public Health and the Native American Commission, to weigh in on any new regulations permitting suction dredge mining and help design a fee structure that pays for program implementation.

On April 1, 2013 DFW released its report, which calls for the legislature to create new regulations and a new fee structure if they want the suction dredge program to continue.  Attached to the report are comment letters from affected agencies, including CA Department of Public Health, California State Lands Commission, Department of Toxic Substances Control, Native American Heritage Commission, and State Water Resources Control Board.

Read the report on DFW’s website here.

The same week, national Fox News aired a balanced story featuring The Sierra Fund CEO Elizabeth Martin.  View the news clip here.