The leading environmental advocacy organization in Prince William Sound, Alaska.
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                                                   Our Mission
   Grass Roots Advocacy for Preserving Water Quality in Prince William Sound for All


Clean Water = Healthy Fisheries = Strong Communities

Get a glimpse of Prince William Sound with PWSK board member, Dean Rand, captain of the Discovery:

Prince William Soundkeeper WKA-collective-blue-JPG.jpg
Founded in 2004 by residents and stakeholders of Prince William Sound.

Soundkeeper is the leading environmental advocacy organization in Prince William Sound, Alaska, and a certified member of the global Waterkeeper Alliance. Our Mission (updated 2013): Grassroots advocacy for preserving water quality in Prince William Sound, Alaska for all users.

History of the Waterkeeper Movement

The Waterkeeper movement started in 1966 when commercial and recreational fishermen, many of them veterans, united to save their river and formed the Hudson River Fishermen's Association. These fishermen recognized that outspoken, citizen-led advocacy was the only way to ensure that laws were enforced and their river, livelihood and the health of their families were protected. They took on many of the nation's biggest industrial polluters and won.

In 1983, they hired the first full-time Hudson Riverkeeper to patrol the river, to restore its abundant fisheries and to lead citizen-based enforcement of environmental laws. Their success spurred an explosive growth of similar grassroots programs across the globe, and in 1999 Waterkeeper Alliance was founded to support these programs.

Today, Waterkeeper Alliance is among the world's fastest growing environmental organizations, with nearly 200 Waterkeepers patrolling rivers, lakes and coastal waterways on six continents. Our proudest accomplishment is the depth and breadth of our member organizations and the unity of their vision for clean water and strong communities.

To learn more, visit: WKA-logo-JPG.jpg


Celebrating a Decade of Citizen Environmental Advocacy          

Help us continue for another ten years!
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Our fundraising goals are woefully short for 2015.

We need your support to continue to advocate for Prince William Sound water quality on your behalf. 

Become a WaterKeeper and join us!


Keep up to date with Prince William Sound on Facebook!

                What's News: 

January 2015

The 2015 Alaska Legislative session begins on January 20. 

There are several bills that have been introduced in the 2015 Alaska Legislature that have implications for water quality.  They are:

HB 14, Ban Plastic Microbeads in Cosmetics, Josephson -"An Act banning the manufacture, sale, or offering for sale of a cosmetic that contains plastic microbeads; and providing for an effective date."

HB 20, Ban Neonicotinoid Pesticides, Drummond -"An Act limiting the application of neonicotinoid pesticides."

HB 38, Aquatic Invasive Species, Seaton   -"An Act relating to the rapid response to, and control of, aquatic invasive species and establishing the aquatic invasive species response fund."

HB 53, Use of Pesticides and Broadcast Chemicals,  Kreiss-Tomkins, Ortiz - "An Act relating to the application of pesticides and broadcast chemicals in certain public places near fish habitat or water used for human consumption and on state-owned land, land leased by or to the state, state highways, and state-owned rights-of-way."


October 2014 

An application to operate a commercial float lodge on Montague Island in western PWS was only approved to be at their lodge in Eshamy Bay.  The request to operate in other locations around Montague Island was denied.  DNR received 74 comments this activity request, 2 advisory and 72 against the permit.  Thank you everyone who commented.   


Without proper oversight, regulation and limits, floating lodges have the potential to create many negative environmental and public safety impacts.  The owners and operators of the Eshamy Float Lodge now have the opportunity, and the responsibility, to prove that they can be good stewards and operate successfully without negatively impacting Prince William Sound’s water quality. 


September 2014 

Reminder of Public Comment Opportunity on the Valdez Marine Terminal Oil Discharge Prevention and Contingency Plan (VMT C-Plan):   

The public review on the renewal of the VMT C-Plan began August 6, 2014.  Comments have been extended to November 21, 2014 while this review is ongoing. 

PWSK is supporting the recommendation being made to the AK DEC by the PWS Regional Citizen's Advisory Council.

For further information, please contact Linda Swiss (swiss@pwsrcac.org).


Summer 2014

The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation has been rewriting the regulations for the “Large Commercial Passenger Vessel Discharge Permit”.  These regulations will replace the dismantled 2006 Citizen’s Cruise Ship Wastewater Ballot Initiative, completing the overturning of the will of the people in passing this legislation. The draft is very discouraging as it re-introduces the failed concept of “mixing zones” and allows for wastewater to be discharged from vessels while in harbor, or even at dock.  The 2006 Voter Initiative did not allow mixing zones, which are not enforceable, especially moving mixing zones.  Currently there are waste water to tap water solutions to drought stricken areas being implemented, so the unattainable technology issue isn't defendable any more.  Nor does the old argument "municipalities do it" hold up as municipalities do not cruise down Montague Strait or up College Fjord.

Public comment was held for less than a month in the spring of this year.  Read the full draft here: 


PWSK will be watching for the next development of these so-called regulations to protect Alaskan waters.


With an El Nino event shaping up in North Pacific this summer, Prince William Sound and the North Gulf Coast of Alaska should see significantly warmer waters.  Warm waters can have a negative effect upon water quality and the productivity of ecosystems. 

Prince William Sound is a cold water ecosystem. Salmon depend upon ice cold, oxygen rich fresh water to spawn and rear young successfully.  Warming temperatures and waters could disrupt this process with unexpected flooding events, loss of nutrients fry depend upon, and a less successful hatching rate.  Once in the ocean, warmer waters could effect the food resources smolt depend upon, and warming water can promote diseases and parasites of types and virulence that doesn't usually occur.

There is also a significant public health concern with warming water temperatures in Prince William Sound this year.  Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning (PSP) has commonly occurred outside of the Sound, but our cold waters and swift currents have, to the best of our knowledge, kept an event from occurring here. 

Today scientists believe it is only a matter of time before a human illness is caused by PSP in PWS.  Visit the below link to understand more on this subject, and to learn how to protect yourself from Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning.



                         May 2014

                     -UPDATE -

Legislative Actions Disenfranchising Alaskans:

The good news this month was that HB77 was removed

from consideration this legislative session. 

But while we were all celebrating the defeat of House

Bill 77, Senators Dyson and Geisel introduced House

Bill 47 – A bill addressing the Preliminary Injunction

procedure, a.k.a. The Silencing Alaskan's Act Part II.   

This bill would make those asking the Courts to delay

industry development/proceedings post a security

deposit for any "damages suffered" by the industry in

the suit.  There already exists in our legal structure

plenty of checks and balances against “frivolous” 

lawsuits.  HB47 would only further restrict citizens,

Native Alaskans, and Non-profits from having their

 voices heard.  HB47 was passed through the

Legislature and will more than likely be signed

into law by Gov. Parnell. 


Senate Joint Resolution 25 which urged the State and

 Federal Governments to compel ExxonMobil to pay

the $92 million dollars they still owe Alaskan's and

Prince William Sound under the Re-Opener for

Unknown Injury Clause that was a part of the 1991

settlement, died quietly in committee.


Another good bill HB325, which called for a modest

increase on the oil & gas production surcharge that

provides funding for the Oil Spill Protection Fund, was

also killed in committee due to strong opposition from



                     March 2014

The 25th Dark Anniversary of the 

Exxon Valdez Oil Spill









 Events Commemorating EVOS:

Monday, March 24, 2014 from 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM EDT, 

11 AM - 12 PM PST, 10 AM - 11 AM Alaska Time

The Eyak Preservation Council, the Alaska Wilderness league,

Greenpeace and others will hold a Twitterchat in observance of

the 25th dark anniversary of the EVOS .

Use Twitter to ask questions and chat directly with

Dune Lankard, Rick Steiner, Denny Takahashi-Kelso 

and Andrew Hartsig.

How:  Tweet questions to @WildSalmon4Ever (Dune - EPC), 

@alaskawild (Rick -Alaska Wilderness League), @ourocean

(Denny & Andrew - Ocean Conservancy), @greenpeace (GreenPeace),

@oceana (Oceana) or @earthjustice (Earth Justice) 

using the hashtag #Exxon25
Monday - March 24 1-3 p.m. UAA



3pm at the UAA Bookstore. This FREE informational

features scientist RIKI OTT, PhD, and a panel with

Dr. JOHN FRENCH, Pegasus Environmental Solutions;

CARL WASILLE, Alaska's Big Village Network; NIKOS

PASTOS, Center for Water Advocacy and Alaska

Inter-Tribal Council; PAM MILLER, Alaska Community

Action on Toxics; and RACHEL NOBLIN, Center for

Biological Diversity.

Citizens’ Advisory

Council, will lead hour-long presentations and

discussion commemorating the 25th anniversary of

the March 24, 1989 EXXON VALDEZ OIL SPILL from

6 to 8pm at the Loussac Library. The presentation will

include history of the spill, changes that have occurred

 since the spill to help protect the environment and

affected communities, and prevention work that will

continue to be needed. A special exhibit by ALICIA

ZORZETTO will also be shown. h 24, 1989 EXXON VALDEZ OIL SPILL from 6 to 8pm at the Loussac Library. The presentation will include history of the spill, changes that have occurred since the spill to help protect the environment and affected communities, and prevention work that will continue to be needed. A special exhibit by ALICIA ZORZETTO will also be shown. For more information, contact Lisa Matlock at lisa.matlock@pwsrcac.org or go to http://www.pwsrcac.org/announcements/25-years-exxon-valdez-oil-spill-events/.



UPDATE on HB 77 - the Silencing Alaskan's Act.

March 21- Good news! HB77 has been stalled in

committee. Senator Giessel stated that the committee

would not be taking up the bill. Perhaps that happened

because of the 137 people out of 166 people testifying

last week against the bill? Good work people!

Public testimony was held on Wednesday, March 12,

and then due to public pressure, again on Friday, March

14.  HB77 went into Committee Hearings again on

March 19. Over 75% of the people testifying or

commenting on HB77were against it. 

The Governor is pushing very hard to pass this bill.

Let's see who our Legislators are listening to.

HB77 short title: Land Use/Disp/Exchanges; Water Rights.
Here is an excellent article on why HB77 is bad for

Alaska and citizen's rights (and salmon's!) to an

adequate supply of clean, fresh water.

Read full bill here.
Find your local Legislative Information Office here.


How Embarrassing! - Governor Parnell had Alaska join with 20                                           

other states challenging the right of EPA and the                                           

Chesapeake Bay to clean up its estuary from the mess                                           

made by industrial pork production. The Chesapeake  Bay                                          

Foundation makes this observation:                                           

"We  say to Missouri, Indiana, Kansas, Alaska, and the                                           

other  17 states, don’t tell us how to restore clean water in                                           

our  backyard. Each of the six Bay states and the District                                           

of  Columbia including hard working farmers, businesses,                                           

and  individuals are cooperating. Together, we are well on                                           

our  way to making our rivers and streams safer, improving                                           

habitat,  protecting human health, and strengthening local                                           

economies.  Those are good things, at least here."



 25 Years of Prevention:         

Commemorating the Exxon Valdez

Oil Spill        

The Prince William Sound Regional Citizens’ Advisory

Council will lead hour-long presentations and discussion

commemorating the 25th anniversary of the March 24,

1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill throughout the month of

March, beginning next week.

The presentation will include history of the spill,

changes that have occurred since the spill to help

protect the environment and affected communities,

and prevention work that will continue to be needed.

If you have questions about this schedule of events,

please contact Lisa Matlock at



Flyers for the presentations are available on the

PWSRCAC website:


Tuesday, March 4, 7 pm at the Valdez Museum

Thursday, March 6, noon Alaska SeaLife Center- Seward

Tuesday, March 11, 7 pm US Forest Service-Cordova

Thursday, March 13, 6 pm Pratt Museum in Homer

Tuesday, March 18, 6:30 pm Kodiak Library

Friday, March 21, 7 pm PWS Community College-Glennallen

Monday, March 24, 6-8 pm Loussac Library-Anchorage


                       February 2014


               Still Not Paid In Full 

The Exxon Valdez Oil Spill settlement included a

provision for unknown damages to be claimed

under the 1991 "Reopener for Unknown Injury"

Agreement and Consent Decree.  Demand for full

payment was submitted to the government and

ExxonMobil in 2006.  ExxonMobil has refused to pay,

and the Palin and Parnell Administrations have never

sought reparation.  Thank you Senator Gardner

for introducing SRJ 25 to the State Legislature. 

Link to full text of SRJ 25 here.



UPDATE -   HB 77 - Water, Salmon & Citizens

February - after a flurry of intense meetings

held just prior to the Holiday's, in which only 1 person

spoke up for HB77, the Governor has pulled the bill

and has said that the HB77 will be reworked before it

is presented to the Legislature again.  PWSK will keep

an eye on this terrible bill and let you know of any

further developments.


Salmon need lots of clean, cold water flowing through

the streambed to continue to produce more salmon. 

Don’t let Gov. Parnell give away Alaska’s sustainable

salmon and our clean water to resource extraction

companies!  Speak up against HB77.  Write your

legislators, call Governor Parnell and let your voice

be heard!  This bill comes up for a vote in January.


Public meetings have been held to packed houses

with people speaking out against this public resource

give away!   Read article from Les Gara here and 

how recent public opposition could lead to changes

in this bill.  Make your voice heard too!

Complete language of HB 77 can be found here.


New Proposed Dispersants                   

Usage Guidelines

The Alaska Regional Response Team has asked for
members of the public and stakeholder groups to
review the draft Oil Dispersant Authorization Plan,
and is providing opportunities for comment and
discussion.  The review process includes public
meetings in the PWSRCAC region in Kodiak, Valdez
and Anchorage in November. 

Public comment: Nov. 13 - Feb. 14, 2014.

Instructions on how to participate in this process
are provided on the ARRT website:  alaskarrt.org.

Please refer to the ARRT website for more information.


Questions and comments? Contact Joe Banta (banta@pwsrcac.org)

or Mark Swanson (mark.swanson@pwsrcac.org).  


     Shepherd Point Facility, Cordova AK.

The US Army Corps of Engineers has released its

request for public comment on this proposed facility

on Orca Inlet, Cordova.  Read the full application here:


Comments will be accepted until December 16, 2013.



        Thank You For Your Support!

The October Fundraising & Membership Drive
has been very successful with over $3,500
received in memberships and donations. 

With the Leighty Foundation's matching gift,
we've raised over $6,500 to benefit Prince
William Sound. 



Fracking fluids are used to enhance oil and gas recovery;

they are injected under pressure in oil and gas

reservoirs, and they blast apart spaces in the source

rock to allow oil and gas to flow more easily. 

Fracking fluids can contain diesel fuel and other toxic

chemicals, yet the precise constituents of fracking

fluids are often concealed as “trade secrets.”

In the Lower 48, the use of fracking fluids has been

linked to drinking water and groundwater contam-

ination, primarily from poor well construction or

poor surface handling of toxic materials. 

The Alaska Oil & Gas Conservation Commission

(AOGCC) took public comment on new fracking rules

in April 2013.  But pressure from the oil and gas

industry – including the powerful American

Petroleum Institute – caused AOGCC to re-open

the proposed rules for additional comments.

TALKING POINTS: Tell AOGCC we need stronger

fracking rules that:

1. Require before-and-after water monitoring around
each well that is subject to fracturing operations
within a half-mile of a freshwater source.
2. Require full disclosure where and when fracking fluids
will be used, what toxic constituents the fracking fluids
may contain, and what amounts of chemicals will be
used BEFORE and AFTER fracking operations
3. Allow no trade secret exemptions from the
requirement to disclose the constituents of fracking
fluids prior to or after their use.
4.  Provide broad public access to fracking-related
information, and not rely solely on the problematic
FracFocus website to disseminate fracking fluid
information to the public.
5. Provide landowners adequate notice and opportunity
to secure their water rights prior to the use of
fracking fluids.

This action is of special note due to HB77
currently waiting in the wings at the State
Legislature which  talks about water rights
 usage and restricts public  and AK Tribal
comment on these issues.  This bill will be
put before the legislature again in Jan.



The public and agency review notice comment period

has been extended until: October 21, 2013 at 5pm

for PWS Adventures LLC's application for the Year-

round anchorage of a commercial floatlodge.

Lodge will be moored for no longer than 30 days

between August 1st through December 31st of each

permitted year within the following locations: Zaikof Bay,

Rocky Bay, Stockdale Bay, and Port Chalmers. From

December 31st to August 1st, the lodge will be

anchored in Eshamy Bay.

To comment or for more information, contact:

Emily Haynes: 907-269-8568


     State Request for Comments

      on PWS Floating Lodge

Comments are due by October 4 on an application


from Prince William Sound Adventures, LLC. 

The request is for year-round anchorage of a

commercial floatlodge within State marine waters.

Lodge will be moored for no longer than 30 days

between August 1st through December 31st of

each permitted year within the following locations:

Zeikof Bay, Rocky Bay, Stockdale Bay, and Port

Chalmers. From December 31st to August 1st,

the lodge will be anchored in Eshamy Bay.

Application is for the period from November 1, 

2013 to October 31, 2018. For more information,

to review the full application or to submit comments,

contact Emily Haynes, at (907)269-8568;

Fax: (907) 269-8913 or
email: emily.haynes@alaska.gov


Chugach National Forest Planning Forum

The Chugach NF will hold its next round of pubic
planning forums beginning next week. The schedule
is below, and please encourage your friends, colleagues,
and group members to attend, call, or write-in to
remind the Forest Service of the importance of
wilderness on the Chugach National Forest.
Remember that in the spring, during the last round
of forums, many seemed unaware of the Wilderness
Study Area.  Only a minority of people spoke-up
for wilderness, while many others pressed the Forest
Service to provide more "access" to remote areas.                                          
Even if you've already commented, please take a
moment to remind the Forest Service of the
importance of wilderness. 
Written comments will be accepted until
October 18, 2013.
              Talking Points:

1. The USFS should recommend all of the Wilderness
 Study Area (WSA) in western Prince William Sound
 as designated wilderness.
2. The USFS should correct its flawed 2002 Wilderness
Recommendation, which excludes important parts of
the WSA from wilderness recommendation.
3.  In particular, Knight Island, Glacier Island, Nellie Juan
Lake, and the upper Columbia Glacier basin are all highly
valued for their wilderness character and should be
recommended as wilderness as part of the current
Forest Plan Revision.
4.  Wilderness character in western Prince William Sound
is highly valued by residents and businesses, yet
population and other pressures threaten the area's
natural resources. The USFS should fulfill its obligation
to manage this area as wilderness until Congress acts
on the Wilderness Study Area.

Schedule of meetings:

Valdez: Monday, September 23, 6-9 pm, Prince
William Sound Community College Room 117;

Cooper Landing & Moose Pass
meeting: Tuesday,
September 24, 6-9 pm, Cooper Landing Community

Soldotna: Wednesday, September 25, 5:30-8:30 pm
Soldotna Sports Center;

Seward: Thursday, September 26, 6-9 pm, Seward
Public Library and Museum;

Cordova: Monday, September 30, 6-9, Masonic Hall;

Girdwood & Whittier meeting:

Wednesday October 2, 6-9 pm

Girdwood Community Center;

Anchorage: Thursday, October 3, 6-9 pm Chugach
National Forest 161 E. 1st Avenue, Door 8





DNR Commission Sullivan to run for U.S. Senate


Recently headlines announced the resignation of

AK Dept. of Natural Resources Commissioner

Dan Sullivan in order for him to run for U.S.

Senate against Mark Begich. 

People may remember that DNR Commissioner

Sullivan was also once Attorney General Sullivan under

the Palin Administration. The same Attorney General

that wouldn't bother Exxon/Mobil with asking them

to pay under the re-opener clause the money

owed to the citizens of this state for cleanup

and remediation.  

See Rick Steiner's article in the Alaska Dispatch,

a good reminder of the priorities that Sullivan

and Parnell have when it concerns Alaskan's,

what is owed us, and how they deal with oil companies.




September 3 is the deadline for recommendations

for consideration in preparation for the 2014


AND ASSESSMENT REPORT, the biennial report

that describes to Alaskans the health of Alaska’s

waters (as required under Sections 303(d) and

305(b) of the federal Clean Water Act) and

includes the list of impaired (polluted) waters.

DEC encourages the public to submit any existing

and readily available water quality related data

and information for consideration by the Dept.

in preparing the Integrated Report. Updates or

revisions to the draft 2012 Integrated Report

are encouraged. Alaska’s draft 2012 Integrated

Report is available at

http://www.dec.state.ak.us/water/wqsar/waterbody /docs/2012finalIntegratedReport.pdf.

For more information or to submit comments,

contact Drew Grant at (907) 465-5304,

Fax:(907) 465-5274, or

email drew.grant@alaska.gov.



                             August 2013

Great news segment on KTUU Channel 2 on the 14th

about the legacy of the Exxon-Valdez Oil Spill in Prince

William Sound.




            Bering River Coal Conservation 

           Your Letters and Support Needed

Could mountaintop removal coal mining occur in

the Prince William Sound watershed?  Yes, it could. 

On the eastern side of PWS the Bering River Coalfield

sits on the headwaters of the Copper River Delta.


"With an estimated 35 million tons of recoverable

coal, the Bering River coalfield has literally fueled

a century long battle between conservationists

and developers. " - Eyak Preservation Council


The Bering coalfield patent was once owned by

Chugach Alaska Corp. who then sold the patent

in the 1980's to a South Korean Native Corp.

Today, the coal patent is up for sale once again.

And while interests would still like to mine

the 12,000 acre, high-quality bituminous coal

tract, the US Forest Service would

consider assisting with the purchase of the

patent in order to retire the Bering River coalfields.


Retiring the coalfields would preserve our world

class salmon habitat, and one of the most important

migratory shorebird stopovers on the western

seaboard.  This act would work to change

the tone and structure of future fossil-fuel

development discussions in our area which

must include social and environmental justice.

"The far-reaching impacts would also include
leveraging comprehensive conservation deals
for the Chugach region, and would promote a
sane and sound connection between healthy
ecosystems, healthy economies and sustainable
." - Eyak Preservation Council

The Dept. of Agriculture has advised that more

Alaskan grassroots support through letters and

small donations would be necessary in order for

the Bering River to remain a high priority in the

Land and Water Conservation Fund.

Please send your comments to:

Secretary Thomas J. Vilsack

U.S. Dept of Agriculture

1400 Independence Ave, NW

Washington, DC 20250

Small donations may be made to the Pinchot Institute

for Conservation which has set up a trust account for

Bering Coal. If the deal does not go through, donors

will receive their donation back, with interest.  Send

donations to the Eyak Preservation Council. 




Bristol Bay commercial fisherman Fritz Johnson

is named to AK Board of Fisheries.

See news release here:



                           July 2013

                     STUCK IN LIMBO

Federal Judge “Dismayed” over Slow Pace of

Promised Preliminary Work

Posted on Jul 15, 2013 by PEER: Public Employees

for Environmental Responsibility:

"Washington, DC - Nearly 25 years after the

massive Exxon Valdez oil spill in Alaska, the

recovery plan for long-term natural resource

damages sits on a shelf, according to documents

posted by Public Employees for Environmental

Responsibility (PEER).

In recent court filings, the U.S. Justice Department

and State of Alaska say they are still waiting for

long overdue scientific studies before collecting a

final $92 million claim to implement the recovery

plan for unanticipated harm to fish, wildlife and


Read the rest of the article here:





                               June 2013

Prince William Soundkeeper Member Capt. Dave Janka

of The Auklet sent this picture of lingering oil in the

sub-tidal sediments of Eleanor Island on June 28. 

Almost 30 years later the Sound is still dealing with

the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill.


                          May 2013

Final Chance to Comment to

 EPA on Pebble Mine! 

Submit all comments by May 31st!

Online: www.regulations.gov.

Send an email to ORD.Docket@epa.gov, or fax to

(202) 566-9744

Include EPA-HQ-ORD-2013-0189 in the subject line.

Send a Letter by May 31st to:

Office of Environmental Information
(Mail Code: 28221T)
Docket #EPA-HQ-ORD-2013-0189
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
1200 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W.
Washington, DC 20460



        Hazardous Marine Debris Alert!

Are you walking the beaches of PWS this spring? 

Be aware of a hazardous marine debris issue with

10" aluminum pesticide canisters with colored caps/lids

 being found on beaches in WA, OR, British Columbia

 & AK. If found, DO NOT OPEN.  They may contain

Aluminum Phosphide pesticides which react with water

or water vapor in the air generating toxic fumes. 

Read the US Fish & Wildlife Service's Field Crew

Awareness Information Sheet below:

Metal Pesticide Canisters_Field Crew Awareness.pdf

        State Legislature shelves ill-conceived
           permitting/ water rules legislation.

Shelved but maybe not quite dead yet. Still, this is good
news for Alaskans and their right to determine
the health and well being of our watersheds.
PWSK will be keeping an eye out in case this
zombie arises from the grave again!

Read more at the Alaska Daily News:



The Alaska Department of Natural Resources
has issued a permit for The Wet Dog Race to
be held spring of 2014.  The Wet Dog Race is
a 2,000-Mile / $1M purse endurance jet ski race
for 1,000 jet skis through the heart of PWS, Cook
Inlet, Kodiak, through the Aluetians and to Lake
Iliamna.  What’s at stake - wildlife, seabirds, 
marine mammals, fish; noise, air, safety and water pollution? Curious minds and 12 environmental
groups want to know. Presented by Susan Olsen.

This event will take play on MAY 19 in Anchorage at the
Tap Root.  There is no admission fee but seating is limited. Come early to get a seat and compete in the science trivia contest with a prize for the winning team.

Anchorage Science Pub is a local not-for-profit that st
imulates interest in science from the general public by organizing brief, entertaining presentations on interesting science topics at local cafes, bars, and other venues. Welcome are folks with no science background, self-identified “science geeks,” and everyone in between, but especially those with curiosity and a sense of humor.
For info on being a presenter or other details, email:  anchoragesciencepub@gmail.

                           April 2013
Update on the Chugach National Forest
Plan Revision by the Chugach Working Group

The Chugach NF has posted additional
meeting notes from the forums held across
 the region in February. They can be viewed
The notes from Hope and Whittier are the only
two that still need to be posted.

*History and facts of this issue can be found in our "News,
Action, Resources" section under "Reports". 
Among the most talked-about topics was "access,"
which people often defined as meaning more
routes for snowmachines or other motorized uses.
Among the least talked-about topics was wilder-
ness or the fate of the Chugach's 2-million-acre
Wilderness Study Area. Both the public and the
 Forest Service don't seem to have much to say
about wilderness, which is surprising since the
new Forest Plan will most likely produce a new
wilderness recommendation to Congress.
To many of us, the current (2002) Chugach NF
wilderness recommendation to Congress is flawed
because it eliminates current protections of upper
Columbia Bay, Glacier Island, Knight Island, much
of the land around Port Wells, and other areas.
If these areas are to remain protected, the Forest
Service should hear more from the public. And to
do a better job on the Forest Plan Revision, the
Forest Service should be talking more about
wilderness, informing the public about an issue
 that currently affects over 35% of the Chugach NF.
Our group is engaging the USFS and more updates
will follow soon. But as the Forest Plan process
continues, please spread the word among your
colleagues and friends that the Forest Service
should hear more about the value of wilderness
protections in western Prince William Sound. And
drop a line to the agency any time you can to
remind them of the many benefits of wilderness….
for camping, hiking, fishing, hunting, education,
science, carbon sequestration, protection of heritage resources, wildlife habitat, wild fish, connecting
children to nature, supporting local Alaskan
economies, and the use and enjoyment by present
and future people.

                         March 2013

              Amendment to Fed. Budget bill an attack
           on the National Environmental Policy Act

he coal companies were able to sneak in a dangerous

amendment to the Federal Budget Bill that would limit our

ability to fight the proposed Chuitna coal strip mine, and

any other such projects that come down the road.  

Amendment 184 will undermine the ability of federal

agencies to consider the full impact of coal mines by

weakening the National Environmental Policy Act. 

This is a direct threat to water quality and the ability for

citizens to speak out against the destruction of our


Please tell Senator Begich and Senator Murkowski that

Alaskans want them to protect our fisheries from coal


You can use this quick link through the Cuitna Citizen's



Or these direct links to the Senators offices:




      Parnell seeking to further limit Public Comment

Late on Tuesday night, March 5, the Alaska State

House passed HB77 with a vote of 23 – 14. 

This bill will further cut public participation from

the natural resource development and use decision

making process.  It also protects government officials

from public oversight by blocking citizen appeals. 

Bills such as this, and the recently passed Cruise

Ship Waste Water bill that overturned the 2006

Citizen’s Water Quality Initiative, are direct threats

to the water quality and the ecosystem health of Alaska. 

Community participation and oversight is essential

in making wise and sustainable natural resource

management plans and decisions.   Please join PWSK

and Alaska's Environmental Community in making our

voices heard to our Government Representatives on this very

important issue.


The Alaska Center for the Environment has set up

a easy to use comment submission form.   Link here:



                        February 2013

 Prince William Soundkeeper on FaceBook!

We've joined the Social Networks!  Check out our

new Facebook page where we will be posting

the latest information on issues and actions

regarding Prince William Sound's water quality,

photos and other interesting items. 

This will be a great way to hear back from you,

our members and constituents.  We are looking

forward to the conversations! 


As we consider more and varied methods of resource
extraction in the state (and around the nation), we
should also  consider how current resource extraction
has impacted our ecosystem.   Alaska's water quality
is being attacked from all sides - the loss of our Coastal
Resources Management Plan, and the recent dumping
(pun intended) of the 2006 Citizen's Initiative on Cruise
Ship Waste Water to return to the archaic "Mixing Zones"
methodology of waste water disposal are two of the
main examples.  Consider howwe are impacted indirectly
from other sources as well:


From the 1/16/13 EPA Toxic Release Inventory:

"Due to extensive metal mining activity and the permitted
disposal of large volumes of regulated mining waste ,
Alaska had the highest TRI releases in the nation and had
a 25 percent  increase in releases from the previous year.
TRI releases from Alaska metal mines can be attributed
to increased production, changes in the production process
or variations in the ore body’s composition." -

As we all know, copper, arsenic and other toxic waste

materials from mining activities impact the watersheds

and rearing streams of salmon.  Without clean, pure water

to rear salmon eggs, there is no salmon harvest.  And that

affects us all in the end.



Alaska takes a step backwards in

protecting our Water Quality


Alaska House passes bill loosening Cruise Ship

Wastewater regulations.

House Republicans passed Gov. Parnell’s bill to allow

discharge of sewage and untreated wastewater in

Alaska waters, repealing a provision of the 2006

citizen initiative that protected Alaskans’ health and

state fisheries. Parnell’s bill would allow the release

approximately 1,064,448,000 gallons of sewage and

wastewater into Alaska state waters every year.

Read more at the Alaska Daily News:



Senate Finance is hearing SB 29 on Wednesday

at 9am and taking testimony on Thursday at

9am. Submit your written testimony to:





Sen.Donald.Olson@akleg.gov, governor@alaska.gov,


Contact your Senator, and the governor at

governor@alaska.gov and tell them that you

are paying attention, and that you don’t like

what you’re seeing.

      Alaska Forum on the Environment
            Feb. 4-8 - Anchorage, Dena'ina Center
The largest annual environmental conference in the
Alaska and the Pacific NW will have many tracks on                    Marine Debris, Water Quality, Mining issues and                   much, much, more.

Please go to www.akforum.org to view the complete                     agenda.
There will be opportunities during the conference to                       comment to Federal and State agencies on these very              important issues affecting environmental health                         and water quality in Alaska.


                         January 2013

     US Forest Service to hold public meetings

Regarding the Chugach Forest Plan Revision
The US Forest Service is hosting open houses to take place         across the communities of the Chugach National Forest during the next month. The purpose is to                     solicit input for the Forest Plan Revision now underway.    They will occur February 7 in Anchorage at the Alaska      Forum on the Environment and then around February 20-28           in other communities.


  2 Bills Proposed To State Legislation Would
Further Gut Cruise Ship Pollution Standards

Governor Parnell introduced SB 29 / HB 80,

 "Cruise Ship Wastewater Discharge Permits" 

which would essentially gut cruise ship pollution

standards and veto the citizens initiative on

the issue that passed in 2006.


       Congress Removes Funding For Alaska
   Fisheries and Japanese Tsunami Marine Debris

From the office of Senator Mark Begich:

Alaska Natural-Disaster Funding


Earlier this week, the House of Representatives stripped                funding  for the federal- and state- declared Chinook                       fishery disaster and tsunami debris clean-up in Alaska             from the natural-disaster funding bill that passed the House.          Needless to say, I am extremely disappointed in this action.

Alaska's natural disasters will not go away just because                they do not receive as much national media attention as               other disasters around the country. I have encouraged my         colleagues to remember the plight of subsistence fisher-               men who are not able to put food on the table this winter,             or those Alaskans affected by the tsunami debris littering          our beaches.

The Senate will most likely vote on the House version of            the Sandy Bill next week. Though the House may have                forgotten natural disaster victims in Alaska, I have no plans           to hold up funding for the victims of Hurricane Sandy when             the bill comes back before the Senate. I assure you that               I am fighting for disaster funding and plan to seek funding              for the Chinook fishery disaster and tsunami debris clean              up in the next available legislative vehicle.

Senator Mark Begich


he Alaska Marine Science Symposium will be held
in Anchorage at the Hotel Capt. Cook and the Egan Center
January 21-25, 2013.  For more information go to:


                        December 2012
     Kayak Island collecting major amounts
                             of JTMD's

From Anchorage Daily News 12/14/12 :

"Debris that gathered this past summer on Alaska's Kayak

Island made walking on its beaches feel like walking 

through a natural disaster zone, a federal biologist said Thursday."

"Jacek Maselko, a biologist with the National Oceanic and

Atmospheric Administration in Juneau, Alaska, said he

was somewhat skeptical about what he would find when

he and a team embarked on a survey of marine debris

along Alaska's coastline."

"At Kayak Island, which is in the Gulf of Alaska, "it really, really hit home because that place was just amazing," he said. Kayak and Montague islands tend to be collector sites, prone to larger amounts of debris because of the movement of the winds and currents. But Maselko said the change in the amount and type of debris at Kayak, from when he walked beaches there in 2008, was overwhelming."

Read the rest of the story here:

Read more here: http://www.adn.com/2012/12/13/2723294/biologist-debris-overwhelming.html#storylink=cpy

http://www.adn.com/2012/12/13/2723294/biologist-         debris-overwhelming.html

                        November 28, 2012

    British Petroleum banned from Federal Contracts
From the Associated Press:
"The Obama Administration put a stop to new federal
contracts with BP on Wednesday, admonishing the
British oil company for a "lack of business integrity" and
also disqualifying it indefinitely from winning new leases
drill on taxpayer-owned lands.

A lengthy list of criminal counts against BP stemming
from the Deepwater Horizon disaster in the Gulf of Mexico
in 2010 prompted the Environmental Protection Agency to
temporarily suspend new contracts with BP and its
affiliates, the agency said.  Existing contracts won't be

"EPA is taking this action due to BP's lack of business
integrity as demonstrated by the company's conduct with
regard to the Deepwater Horizon blowout, explosion, oil
spill and response," the EPA said in a statement."

Read more from the Anchorage Daily News:


                        November 19, 2012

Water Quality Antidegredation WorkGroup will meet
from 9-10:30 a.m. via teleconference.  The Alaska Dept. of
Environmental Conservation (DEC) has established an
advisory Water Quality Antidegredation Workgroup to
provide DEC with various perspectives and inform the
department's development of draft implementation
methods for the state's water quality antidegredation
policy.  A workinggroup teleconference will discuss
whether additional changes need to be made to the Draft
Work Group Report. An updated draft of the report will
available to the general public and members of the
Workgroup on November 8th on the DEC website.  The
decision on whether to hold this meeting will take place
on November 16 and be posted at:
Antidegradation/index.html. For more information,
contact Brock Tabor at brock.tabor@alaska.gov or
(907) 465-5023.

              September / October 2012

PWSK Joins EarthJustice petition to U.S. EPA on
Chemical Oil Dispersant Rulemaking
EarthJustice is representing a coalition of conservation,
wildlife and public health groups in the Gulf region and in
Alaska in a citizen suit under the provisions of the federal
Clean Water Act to compel the U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency to issue a rule on chemical oil
dispersants. EPA’s current rules -
which during the 2010
Gulf oil disaster failed to ensure that dispersants would be
used safely - do not fulfill requirements mandated by the
Clean Water Act.  Currently, regulations dictating
dispersants eligible for use in oil spills require minimal
toxicity testing and no threshold for safety.

For more information on this case go to:


Clean Harbor Working Group

A great big standing ovation goes out to the hardworking
group on the Cordova Clean Harbor Effort, part of PWSK’s Clean Harbor’s Initiative Program.  An amazing 336 surveys
were collected from Cordova harbor users, including
tender captains, commercial fisherman, recreational
boaters, and charter boats.  Thanks goes out to Allen
Marquette and his team of dedicated volunteers for their
hard work designing and implementing the survey and disseminating the educational materials.  And thank you
to the organizations who donated office space, staff time,
equipment, funding and more: Trident, Copper River
Seafoods, CR/PWS Marketing, Alaska Sea Grant, OSRI,
CDFU, and the CRWP.   These surveys will be analyzed
and used to further more Clean Harbor Initiative Projects
in the future.  PWSK donated $6,000 towards this project
as part of the special bequest from Steve Smith, a PWSK
Founder and Board Member.

August 2012

PWSK supports a YES vote on Ballot Initiative 2   – re-instating AK’s Coastal Management Plan. 

The Coastal Management Program originated in federal              legislation and the idea was to give local people a voice            in development issues that are under federal jurisdiction.   Alaska is the only coastal state without a CMP.  There           are federal requirements for what constitutes a state         coastal management program, as well as policy that        requires federal agencies to work with state programs.

PWSK feels that a coastal management plan is a very                important tool for ensuring coastal Alaskans have an                  avenue for providing input into development decisions                 that affect them.

For more information on this important voter issue; visit              the website of the "Vote Yes" sponsoring organizations:


Alaska sets up tsunami debris website
by The Associated Press

JUNEAU, Alaska - The state of Alaska has set up a website
to provide information on marine debris, including debris
from the 2011 tsunami in Japan.

The website was called for by Gov. Sean Parnell as part
of an administrative order focused on state agency coor-
dination and public information surrounding the debris
issue. Parnell also designated the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation as the lead state agency to
coordinate efforts to deal with any tsunami debris.

A Parnell spokeswoman says there are no costs associat-
ed with carrying out the governor's order at this point.
The order was signed Monday and released Tuesday.

The state is still in the process of devising an overall plan
for addressing the tsunami debris issue.

The website is at:



June 2012

Notice of


A public hearing will be held from 9 am to 12

at the Legislative Information Office on the


PROGRAM (ACMP). The ACMP program that

expired July 1, 2011 was administered by the

Alaska Department of Natural Resources.

The ballot initiative seeks to recreate the

program to be managed by the Department of

Commerce, Community and Economic

Development. The initiative is available at


Wet Dog Jet Ski Race Approved

The Alaska Daily News reported on June 28, 2012 that
Alaska Department of Natural Resources has approved
the permit to hold the Alaska Wet Dog Race.  To read
the article:


Prince William Soundkeeper will continue to monitor the
activity associated with this race and keep you notified.

May 2012

         Exxon Valdez oil still very present
            in Prince William Sound

Capt. Dave Janka of the M/V Auklet took these
pictures on Eleanor Island on May 26, 2012.

Tracking Japan Tsunami Marine Debris Hitting Alaska’s Coast

NOAA has set up an email account for reporting potential

Japan Tsunami Marine Debris (JTMD).  NOAA staff is

asking that anybody who sees debris that they think

could be from the tsunami to send an email there with as

much detailed information as possible about what they

saw, where they saw it, and when. Pictures and related

information can be emailed to: disasterdebris@noaa.gov

NOAA is publishing updated GNOME model runs every two

weeks on the website at:



March 2012
Chuitna Citizen's Coalition needs Alaskan's Support!

Governor Parnell is poised to allow mining companies to    d destroy salmon streams in order to mine high sulfur            content coal to be sold to China.  Even though Governor             Parnell has stated in the past that he "would not trade                   one resource for another")  this is exactly what is            happening.

PacRim Coal wants to destroy over 11 miles of salmon
stream in Cook Inlet.  This would be the first time in state
history a mining company would be permitted to destroy
sustainable salmon for short-term profits.

If this is allowed to go forth, it will set a precedent on         allowing such activities, a clear threat to the future health and    sustainability of the State of Alaska's water quality and        salmon fisheries.

Please send a letter to Governor Parnell, you can link
through the Chuitna Citizens Coalition.  



In the Alaska Daily News Feb 16, 2012:
          Judge Rejects Exxon attempt to
             stop new cleanup charges


Read Rick Steiner's important piece on the unresolved status of the Exxon Valdez Re-Opener Clause at the Mudflats Blog: www.themudflats.net 



Attention EVOS Affected Communities

Please join NOAA to discuss an upcoming funding opportunity for funding restoration, planning, protection and prevention projects to improve marine habitat in EVOS affected communities.

The event will be held on Wednesday, February 8, 2012, 5:30-7:00 p.m.

Downtown Marriott, Denali Room, 820 West 7th Avenue, Anchorage, AK

For more information on this upcoming funding opportunity go to:


Public Comment extended to January 26, 2012!
on Land Use Permit application for
The Alaskan Wet Dog Race Event

John Lang has applied for a land use permit with the Alaska Department of Natural Resources to hold an annual water event titled "The Alaska Wet Dog Race Event".  This event is a personal watercraft race from Whittier to Iliamna.  Public comments were originally due on Dec. 27, but have been extended to January 26, 2012. 

PWSK is concerned by this event due to potential issues regarding disturbance of wildlife, disruption of personal and subsistence activities, water pollution and noise issues.

To learn more about this requested permit and to submit a comment link to the DNR Public Notice here: http://dnr.alaska.gov/commis/pic/pubnotfrm.htm

Homer Harbor first to be
Certified "Clean" in Alaska

Congratulations to the Community of Homer for being the first harbor in the state to be certified "clean".

From the Homer Tribune:
"Alaska Clean Harbors is a voluntary program providing valuable pollution prevention tools for local communities to protect the marine resources that support our coastal economies.

After two years of working with Alaska Clean Harbors, from help developing the program and through the certification process, the ACH Advisory Committee certified the Homer Harbor in October as the first Alaska Clean Harbor in the state."

Read the rest of the story at the Homer Tribune: http://homertribune.com/2011/11/homer-harbor-becomes-first-certified-%E2%80%98clean%E2%80%99/

Exxon Valdez Reopener Clause Update 

"U.S. District Court Judge H. Russel Holland has taken under advisement arguments centered around the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill and is expected to rule soon on Exxon's request to be released from further financial obligations for spill cleanup.

Exxon asked the court on Sept. 15, in the reopener phase of the ongoing litigation, to grant its motion to enforce a 1991 consent decree, relieving Exxon from a demand from the state of Alaska and the federal government for an additional $92 million to deal with long-term environmental damage." 

Read the rest of this article by Margaret Bauman on the Cordova Times webpage here:


New Forum for Discussion of Invasive Species Monitoring in Alaska

The new Nisbase Citizen Science Forum can be accessed at: (http://forums.nisbase.org

The Forum is live and will be linked to other invasive species websites over the next month.  There are individual forums for various citizen science projects within the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center, including the Japanese kelp Undaria, the mitten crab, green crab and plate watch.  The latter will be devoted to discussion of issues relevant to tunicate monitoring and expanding to include other species in Alaska.  Please sign up and feel free to post any relevant question, comment, concern you have regarding your monitoring work.  Over the next months a frequently asked questions section will be added.  The goal is to move a lot of the group and individual discussion to the forum, so if you have questions, please post them there.  The forums are public and open to all.


From our Friends in the Gulf of Mexico:

Requests by BP, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and others to be allowed to utilize the product Oil Spill Eater (www.osei.com) instead of the continued use of the highly toxic Corexit 9500 and 9527a have all been turned down by the EPA with no real basis for the denial.

To date the denial of the use of Oil Spill Eater has or will cost BP and its shareholders about $38 Billion dollars more than it would cost to completely clean up the Gulf Oil Spill which is estimated to cost about $4 Billion. Even though BP has formally requested the use of Oil Spill Eater twice since the oil spill began. (Please see economic comparison attached)

With the fact that fresh BP oil has been recently reconfirmed by LSU as continuing to leak from the Deepwater Horizon (Macondo 252 well) and the latest report on fisheries in the Gulf of Mexico (see link below) are being decimated, it is mind boggling that this has not received the attention that it deserves, and that the EPA could continue to deny the use of Oil Spill Eater which has been on the EPS National Contingency Plan list for 20 years and has been used on over 14,000 oil spills and utilized by every branch of the United States Military.

The Save Our Gulf website has been established by Waterkeeper Alliance to coordinate the efforts of Gulf Waterkeepers who are fighting to protect the Gulf Coast, its communities and environment, from the devastating BP oil disaster. This site provides a constant stream of transparent information being reported from the front lines.


Boycott Farmed Salmon
Stand Up for Pacific Salmon!
Prince William Soundkeeper is one of over twenty Waterkeeper organizations from Alaska to California that have launched the Stand Up for Pacific Salmon (SUPS) campaign in their watersheds, respectively. Calling for a boycott of farmed salmon to help protect Pacific salmon from the impacts of net-pen farmed salmon, the Waterkeeper groups are calling on the “Big Six” grocery retailers to remove the product from their shelves. 

The SUPS campaign asks customers of Costco, Safeway, Trader Joe’s, Tesco, Kroger, and SuperValu to urge them to follow the example of their fellow retailer Target. In January, the discount chain, on the advice of the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s SeafoodWatch program, dropped net-pen salmon from over 1700 Target stores.

Student Scientists
Sign Up for Ocean Science & Leadership Expedition:

Student Scientist Spring Blog Updates

More News:

Prince William Soundkeeper, PO Box 1368, Cordova, Alaska, 99574  tel: 907-424-5701 www.pwsoundkeeper.org  a 501c(3) non-profit organization.

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provided proper citation and credit are given for the work and no-cost dissemination is intended. Page last updated February 2013.

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