Environment

Alaska Native village won't get road through wildlife refuge





The Obama administration today said it won't authorize a road through the Izembek National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska.

The Alaska Native village of King Cove proposed a road from its land to an airport in order to provide a safe travel route for residents. But the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said the route would harm the refuge and its wildlife.

“The Fish and Wildlife Service’s preferred alternative would protect the heart of a pristine landscape that congress designated as wilderness and that serves as vital habitat for grizzly bear, caribou and salmon, shorebirds and waterfowl – including 98 percent of the world’s population of Pacific black brant,” Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said in a press release. “After extensive dialogue and exhaustive scientific evaluation, the agency has identified a preferred path forward that will ensure this extraordinary refuge and its wilderness are conserved and protected for future generations.”

The final environmental impact statement was completed after three years of public meetings, consultation sessions and scientific review.

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Federal agency rejects road through Alaska refuge (AP 2/5)