Here are 5 reasons why that means the fly-fishing community has changed forever.
Unless you are living under a rock, or off fishing in some remote southern hemisphere camp with no connectivity, you’ve probably heard this news. The Environmental Protection Agency effectively killed the Pebble Mine. That’s a really big, flippin’ deal. Having been intimately involved in this fight for the past 17 years, the editors of Angling Trade offer these five nuggets of perspective on why the fly-fishing world is changed forever.
1. It’s a big flppin’ deal. (So what? We said that… it’s worth saying again!) Probably the greatest conservation victory the fly-fishing community/industry as a whole has ever been part of, this side of the creation of the Clean Water Act. Take a bow if you did anything, from donating to the cause, to visiting the region, to signing petitions, whatever… it all mattered, and we did it together. Be proud to be an angler.
2. There are going to be a lot of people taking bows. A lot of people should take bows. But understand that it was like a chain, in that it was only as strong as all the links put together. That chain included native communities, commercial fishermen, hard-core environmentalists, and hard-core political conservatives who happened to really like fishing and hunting (a lot). We have a blueprint for how to really get more stuff done going forward.
3. How do we know this is really the end? I mean, we’ve kinda been told that before. Well, truthfully, it’s not the end. And with that amount of gold and copper in the ground there, we just don’t believe there will be such a thing as “never ever.” So don’t be pissed when organizations continue to ask for your support as they stave off future threats that will surely come. But this is pretty damn close to never ever. It now becomes a test of vigilance.
4. We need more causes like this to keep this industry united. We have plenty of options, from the Everglades, to removing dams on the Lower Snake River and in so doing, protecting 50% of the salmon and wild steelhead in the Lower 48, to bringing back Atlantic Salmon, to protecting the Great Lakes from more invasives, climate change, and much more. After the applause subsides, we risk wandering about like we did when we graduated school, wondering “what the hell are we going to do now?”
Don’t ever be complacent.
5. Because the greatest lesson of all… we can win. The planet can win. At the end of the day, it isn’t always about profits. That’s really the essence of this “industry.” Always have faith, because if we could win this one, we can win anything.