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Chickaloon Village Traditional Council Files International Complaint

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According to a press release, the Chickaloon Village Traditional Council, governing body of the Chickaloon Native Village, has filed a complaint against Usibelli Coal Mine Inc. and Electric Power Development Co., Ltd. with the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.

The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, or OECD, exists to promote economic cooperation and has 34 member nations from all regions of the world. Its activities include promoting sustainable development and ethical practices in the activities of its members’ multi-national corporations. Its Guidelines for Multi-National Enterprises establish basic components of responsible corporate conduct, covering such issues as labor and human rights, bribery and corruption, environment and information disclosure, and a complaints procedure.

The Chickaloon Village Traditional Council's complaint concerns the Usibelli Coal Mine activities at Wishbone Hill. Specifically, and according to the release, "UCM’s exploratory activity late last year [was] based on permit application information more than 20 years old, not taking into account the dramatic increases in population of the area in recent years, and that pursuant to these stale and misleading permits, UCM built a coal hauling road 100 yards from CVTC’s Tribal school, Ya Ne Dah Ah School, prompting safety concerns that were also not considered."

Wishbone Hill is part of the ancestral lands of the Athabascan Ahtna Indigenous Peoples of Alaska.

“For years now, with financial and technical help from federal agencies and other partners, we’ve invested over $1,000,000 and thousands of man-hours of effort on fish passage and salmon population restoration on Moose Creek, ruined by World War I coal mining," said Chief Gary Harrison, according to the release. "Our efforts received substantial funding and won national awards from the U.S. Federal Government. Now they want to destroy it all over again.”

The Chickaloon Village Traditional Council is located in Sutton, Alaska, 45 miles northeast of Wasilla.

Read the release: Delta News Web, "International Complaint Filed by Chickaloon Village Traditional Council"