FILE PHOTO: Sockeye salmon are seen in Bristol Bay, Alaska, in an undated handout picture provided by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
If built, the mine would produce 70 million tons of gold, molybdenum and copper ore a year and create a pit 1,970 feet (600 meters) deep in Alaska’s Bristol Bay watershed.
“A permit denial leaves the door open for future mining in Bristol Bay under more politically favorable circumstances,” the group said in a statement.
The United Tribes of Bristol Bay, which represents 15 area tribal governments, and other mine opponents said they would seek permanent protections for the region.
President-elect Joe Biden said in August he opposes the mine and as president would “protect Bristol Bay.” Transition team spokesman Jamal Brown said his position remains the same.
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