Resistance Radio Interview with AWA President, Ed Schmitt

Listen to an interview with Ed Schmitt, President of the AWA Board to learn more about Alaska’s wildlife issues.

Interview Transcript

Hi, I’m Derrick Jensen and this is Resistance Radio on the Progressive Radio Network. My guest today is Edward Schmitt. He’s President of the Board of the Alaska Wildlife Alliance and Chairman of the Board of the Kenai Area Fisherman’s Coalition. He is a retired surgeon and rancher. He lives in Soldotna, Alaska, along the Kenai River.

So first, thank you for your work, and second, thank you for being on the program.

ES: Well, you’re sure welcome. Thank you for having me.

DJ: So in the pre-talk, before we started the actual interview, we were going to talk about the Ambler Road proposed in the southern Brooks Range I believe? But in the pre-talk, we realized that there are a lot more issues in Alaska that people in the lower 48 don’t know about. So would you mind talking just briefly about the Ambler Road? And then talk about some of the other important issues that are going on in Alaska that a lot of us down here in the lower 48 never hear about.

ES: I’d be happy to. And I can start with the Ambler Road project. It’s interesting; most of us in Alaska haven’t been to the Ambler area. I believe it was one of the last places in the country that was opened to homesteading. So people who live there were able to homestead relatively recently, to prove up their claim and get their land. So it has that flavor of still probably being the very last frontier, where people moved because they appreciated rivers and the wildness of the area. The Ambler Road is a proposed 211 mile road. You can think “211 miles” but imagine how long that is, through an untouched landscape. It would go from the Dalton Highway, which is where the Trans-Alaska Pipeline runs up to Prudhoe Bay and it would cross through the Gates of the Arctic National Park, the Noatak National Preserve, the Gates of the Arctic National Preserve, and encroach on national wildlife refuges. In its proposed plan, it would cross over 3000 streams and 11 major rivers and 1700 acres of wetlands.

Again, having lived my earlier life in the lower 48, I just would ask people to imagine: Take 211 miles somewhere you live, crossing that many water bodies and parks. And think of what an impact that would have on your state, to have that area suddenly opened up. And the reason that they would like to do this is to have a Canadian company build a mine. The road would allow the mining products to get to market. A lot of us feel like that is an absurd tradeoff. We don’t have that much wild undeveloped land left. To do a project of this magnitude just seems absurd. And I can’t even begin to envision what it would cost. The State of Alaska has been going broke the last couple of years. We have very little income. We are looking at hopefully big oil will come back and we can tax them to death and live in an economy where we can spend as much as we want because we can tax the oil companies. Over the last couple of years, that does not seem to be the case. But people still think “Oh, if only we could get some big company in, and we’ll tax them.”

One of the ironies is that we don’t even tax mining all that much here. We tax oil production but not the mining. So, again, imagine this enormously long road through unspoiled areas, at a cost that – the money could be put to so many better uses. It just seems absurd. And yet that’s what the current administration seems to want to have happen.

DJ: So that doesn’t seem to be the only major sort of boondoggle destructive road that is being pushed in. Are there any other roads that you would like to talk about?

ES: Yes. Our Alaska congressional delegation and our state government seem to think that any job is far more valuable than preserving any amount of wilderness. And although Alaska is vast, most of it isn’t particularly productive. The parts that are productive have been set aside by the federal government for things such as national wildlife refuges. The Izembek National Wildlife Refuge is home to countless migratory bird species and they use that area for nesting. That’s why the Izembek Refuge was set aside. There is a small village at Cold Bay that would like to be able to get the fish they catch to market, and so they want to build a road from Cold Bay to King Cove. And the environmentalists, or anybody caring about the fate of migratory birds, have said that’s a terrible tradeoff. A road would only be passable during the summer to get fish to market through one of the last good nesting areas for migratory species is not a very good trade. Unfortunately, within the last month, Secretary Zinke has just signed the paperwork to in essence destroy a good aspect of the national wildlife refuge and build a road through migratory bird nesting habitat, solely so a village can get fish to market during the summer. They claim that it’s for safety, that if the people of Cold Bay have a medical emergency would need this road to get to the hospital. But all the studies show that it would be almost impossible to keep it open during the winter because of the severe weather, that even if you had a fleet of snowplows you couldn’t keep the road open.

Senator Stevens had gotten them a multimillion dollar hovercraft to go across the bay. The conditions are so bad that frequently that thing can’t even work. And to say that we care so much about a few residents of Cold Bay – if the government here would spend anywhere near that much money per capita on my health care, that would be just amazing. But it’s a totally disingenuous way to talk about a road through a national wildlife refuge that will significantly impact migratory bird nesting. And the results will be sort of invisible. Most people won’t really be aware that there aren’t quite as many migratory birds as there used to be. And even if they would kill thousands, or tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands, nobody would really be aware. But this road would be of an economic boom to a small handful of people. And yet, that’s the decision our Department of the Interior has just made, against the objections of all the wildlife managers and anybody with any common sense about what’s important up here in Alaska. It’s just shocking to me.

DJ: Let’s back up a second. I live just north of the Klamath River in California, and back in the 1930’s, even as late as the 1930’s there were accounts of the entire Klamath being “black and roiling with salmon.” And maybe 10-12 years ago somebody from Alaska sent me a picture – I write about salmon a lot. Somebody from Alaska sent me a picture of a river in Alaska. It looked like just a regular river. It had a little bit of gold on each side and then the whole rest of the bottom of the river was black. But if you look more closely, you can see it’s because the bottom is sort of golden, but there are so many salmon that you can’t see the bottom of the river. And what I’ve read about Alaska is that there are still places there that are as wild and fecund and full of life as was true for this whole continent. So can you talk just a little bit about the wildlife in either your part of Alaska – how are the fish there, or the bears there?

Oh, one more thing. I get really excited because where I live I see a black bear, usually a mother and cub, almost every day during the spring and summer. But I’ve read accounts of California prior to conquest, and if you were near a river you would see a grizzly bear every fifteen minutes. Very often, you’d see accounts like that. So can you talk a little bit about what it’s like there? The grizzly bears, or wolves. I’ve never in my life heard a wolf. So can you talk a little bit about the wild that is – we talk about these two roads, but what is at risk? That’s my question. Sorry to go on so long.

ES: That touches on many, many aspects, and the answer will be long. I live on the Kenai River. When I first came to the Kenai River, I accidentally ended up staying in the bed and breakfast of the park superintendent, or at least the former park superintendent. He had incorporated much of the Kenai River into the Alaska state parks. And he said that I ought to go fishing with him, to see what the river looked like.

The salmon come in on the high tide. I’d grown up in Colorado, where I’d fished mountain streams all my life, and thought some of those were pretty impressive. On the high tide of the Kenai River that August – the tide comes up something like twelve miles, up the river; the tides here can be 24 feet tall, or high, regularly. The salmon come in as the tide pushes all that seawater up the river. And so I watched the river go from a flowing river to sort of a tidewater lake, and on every square foot of that lake, there was a salmon back porpoising up the river. The fish finder was just black with fish under the boat we were sitting in. And it was amazing to me how many fish came in on this particular high tide.

The Kenai River still gets that to some extent. At that time, though, we had the biggest king salmon in the world. It was common for 70 and 80 pounders to be caught. I think the world record is a 93 pounder that was caught in the 70’s. I have watched – those salmon have essentially disappeared, the big kings. Now we get a run, and if they make numbers of 5000 in the early run, and 25,000 in the later run, our Department of Fish and Game is very happy. When I first got here, people caught that many fish. It wasn’t just what the escapement should have been. When you see a river, and what they can produce, if they are managed well, vs. what you see on the Klamath, and what I’ve seen over the last 30 years on the Kenai River, it’s heartbreaking.

The Kenai River is still very productive. We get a very good red salmon run. But it breaks my heart that the world record king run has been decimated, solely because people can’t resist killing a few more than they need to. I’m not against people catching and eating fish. I love to do that. That’s why I’m here. But we should only take the excess, or the surplus, not try to justify how many we can kill each year. And then, over the course of my lifetime, watch a worldwide treasure become something mediocre. Some years we get such a poor king salmon run that I’m afraid the big ones will never come back.

It’s not that every female salmon makes a certain amount of babies. Fish are unique in that the bigger they are, they exponentially increase the number of babies they can have. So a king salmon female has roughly 17 eggs per millimeter. Every millimeter more she grows, she produces 17 more eggs. So the much bigger ones are far more productive than ones half their size. I’ve still seen that.

I used to have grizzly bears come through my yard on their way to the river, as they would catch the fish. A lot of people up here are just terrified of the bears and would rather just shoot every single one of them. A lot of people think it’s just an amazing sight to see a grizzly bear fishing by the river. Unfortunately, in some of the places I still go to fish, I can see that every so often, but the Alaska Department of Game has recently wanted to try to exterminate bears and wolves from the Kenai Peninsula to try to increase the number of moose. So we have taken three to four times the number that’s sustainable, and the number of brown bears that I see has really diminished.

And it’s pointless. They say they want to have trophy hunting. Well, how many people are really impressed by a great big brown bear? And, with the numbers they’re taking, most of the bears are relatively small ones. They’re not even all that impressive for trophies. It’s just an absolute waste of a natural resource.

Most of us that moved here to Alaska, and that is roughly 78% of the population, moved up here because we get shivers down our spines when we see rivers full of salmon, when we see iconic wildlife. The moose, the bears, the wolves. And it’s heartbreaking that the administration wants to turn this into strip malls interspersed with gravel pits, unaware of what treasures we’re destroying by this death of a thousand cuts. The Kenai National Wildlife Refuge, which is literally in my back yard, used to be the Kenai National Moose Range. And in the late 1800’s the hills were white with sheep, with the Dall sheep that people would hunt. Hunters would come from all over the country, and instead of shooting one moose, they’d fill canoes or boats with eight or ten big moose. It was one of the first places where Alaskans tried to instill some order and insisted that the federal government hire game wardens. People said “We can’t keep taking at this rate.” It was one of the first national wildlife refuges that Theodore Roosevelt signed into existence.

But by then the market hunting for building the railroad from Seward up to Anchorage, the population increase, many years of no limits had left it a mere shadow of what it was. The Caribou Hills are called the Caribou Hills but very few of us see any caribou up in those hills. One of our great hikes is called Slaughter Gulch. Nobody can remember whether it was the sheep or the goats or the moose that they slaughtered all of them to give Slaughter Gulch its name, but there’s hardly any wildlife in Slaughter Gulch anymore.

It takes many many people a lot of effort to preserve the animals, to preserve the fish, so that everybody can see it. But very few can slaughter them all. And that’s what is so distressing. This really is the last place in the world, I think, where we’ve done as much to manage and try to preserve the salmon runs, the moose populations, the bears, the wolves.

And the wildlife refuges are mandated to preserve the natural ecosystems for biodiversity. One of the very first things the Trump administration did was abolish rules that, over two years, our wildlife refuge put into place. Rules that say you cannot shoot wolves and bears out of helicopters. You cannot go and gas them in their dens to kill them. For some reason, our Alaska senators and congressmen take horrible exception to those rules, thinking that we cannot exist as a state unless we’re allowed to gas wolves in their dens and shoot bears and wolves from helicopters, and bait in brown bears to shoot them. That is just an absurd way of thinking. But that destruction has already occurred. It’s very very frustrating to me.

DJ: Before we go on with some other destructive projects; you’ve talked about the fecundity of the fish, but you’ve also mentioned in passing the migratory birds. Can you talk a little more about which birds those are and the numbers that you see? I want to give one example from this. As always with environmental issues, they break our hearts. I was born in Nebraska, and I also grew up in Colorado, by the way. I was born in Nebraska and when my mom would take me back to visit her mother in Lincoln, we would often in the spring stop by the Platte River. We would see the migratory birds and she would tell me stories of when she was a child, that there would sometimes be so many birds that they would be like at Chicago’s O’Hare Airport, that the flock would be circling up above until another flock would take off because there was no more room on the river. There were more birds than the Platte River could hold. The numbers of birds have just plummeted, and of course the Platte River’s quite dried since then too.

So can you talk a little bit about who these birds are, and the numbers that you see, and that might have been there before.

ES: I am not an extensive expert on birds. I love to watch the birds. My favorite birds are the Arctic terns. I don’t know how many of those you’ve seen, but they come up to Alaska every spring to nest and have their babies. I think they’re afraid of the dark, because as soon as the days start to get short, they migrate and they go clear to the Antarctic. So they spend their time between the Arctic and the Antarctic. That flight is just unbelievable to me. They are the most elegant fliers. When I’m fishing I can see them take insects off the water, they can dive down and catch lamprey eels and other things under the water. They’re just very elegant birds. If someone down in South America were to decide that they needed to do some project, they could kill them all, and then one year they’d just never show back up here. I’m not sure how many people would ever even notice. But I really would.

In the springs, the varied thrushes. They’re a beautiful bird, they’re something that I just love to see because I hardly ever get to see them, but I hear them all the time. Their calls are distinctive. It’s like a telephone ringing. I’m walking through the woods to go to the river, fishing, and I can all of a sudden hear, in early April, the varied thrush return.

The ruby-crowned kinglet. I can’t think of other examples. But as April progresses, all the migratory birds start to come back and they’re going to nest up here before they head back down south. At our birding club this week, someone gave a presentation on the Cook Islands, which is roughly 20 degrees south of the equator. And three of the birds he saw there all nest in Alaska. And those birds were born in Alaska and go to the Cook Islands for their winters.

Our national wildlife refuges were formed as Roosevelt recognized we were destroying these migratory species because if one place on their journey becomes inhospitable they don’t get do overs. That will kill them all. So it is a tribute to our wildlife refuges that we have as many migratory birds as we do, and you can get lulled into a sense of security if you see a gigantic flock of this or that and think “Oh, man; there are millions or thousands of these around. They’ll always be here.” And the point is that’s not true. It takes a lot of work by a lot of people to make certain that they’re protected where they’re most vulnerable and that we don’t just kill them for plumes or hats or something like we used to do down in the Everglades. That we say “These are valuable beyond what we can kill them for right now.” And maybe if there is a true surplus we can eat some ducks and geese again. I’m not against that at all. It’s just very shortsighted. “What can I kill now or take now without any concern for what that means for the future?”

Yeah, the Platte is an amazing river. When I was a kid, seeing the ducks and geese along that was just fascinating to me. But I think that there are maybe some people that are not moved by that. My sense is most people really are, and that the few that aren’t take so much from those that are. It brings all these issues into focus. So a handful of people might make a lot of money on a road or a dam or a mine. But everybody else loses. At what point do we say we’ve learned from our past mistakes? And again, Alaska is the last place on earth where we can make that choice. We don’t have to destroy all the fertile places in Alaska just because we can.

DJ: So I don’t know if you’ll have an answer to this. We have all heard of Keystone XL and we’ve heard about major projects happening in the States. And in no way am I demeaning the efforts to stop those, which are incredibly important, but this conversation started with a 211 mile road that I’m guessing 99.9% of the people in the lower 48 have never heard of? And then there was the second road that you mentioned, that I’d never heard of. I’ve been working on these issues for decades. I hadn’t heard of either of these roads until recently. Is that just my ignorance? Do you think it’s true that a lot of people in the lower 48 may not hear about some of the projects in Alaska? And if that’s true, why do you think that’s the case?

ES: I’m going to say something that I hope my friends in the environmental community won’t take umbrage with. I think every environmentalist has heard of the Keystone XL pipeline. My view of that is that our efforts would be far better placed talking about something that makes a whole lot more sense. We have countless pipelines that get oil and fossil fuels to market. And I can appreciate the idea that we don’t want more fossil fuels to market. But the reality is that our lives are all dependent on these fossil fuels. We don’t want oil spills, we don’t want contamination of groundwater, we don’t want needless disruption. But I think focusing on an issue like the Keystone XL pipeline and missing the Pebble Mine, the Chuitna Mine, the Ambler Road, the Izembek roads, the very evidently destructive projects that are being proposed up here in Alaska. The assault on the national parks and national wildlife refuges by the State Fish and Game, to say “We want these to be managed for game parks. We want to shoot more moose and caribou.” Even though there are so many people that everybody in the state could not shoot a moose and live off it. Maybe 50 years ago they could. There just aren’t the numbers and Alaska’s not that productive.

I get frustrated with our national environmental efforts that I don’t think focus on the proper things. I think if people came to Alaska and saw the fish and the wildlife and our scenery and said “Maybe our biggest priority as environmentalists would be to save this, to make sure that my grandson will be able to grow up and see what I saw.” It might make more sense.

I don’t want to poo-poo what the environmentalists are focusing on, but when I see what’s happening in my back yard and how easily preventable it would be if more people said “Let’s not kill the last grizzly bear on the Kenai Peninsula.” Our State Department of Game passed a proposal to eradicate all the wolves on the lower third of the Kenai Peninsula, around Kachemak Bay and Homer. I would think that the environmental cause would be served much better by some umbrage at that proposal. Do you really think Alaska would be better off without bears and wolves? It’s those kind of things that I get a little bit frustrated with, and I don’t know what the best solution is other than the awareness that this still does exist. It’s not like down in the lower 48 where everybody hears about how it used to be. We still get to see it. But unless we’re really, really vigilant, that’s going to disappear. How many more roads do you need to build through these critical habitats before it dawns on us that geez, there used to be a lot of birds but there aren’t that many any more.

Even looking at all the Audubon bird counts, the numbers are declining. And that should be something that the environmentalists rally around, rather than pick a few grandiose schemes that I don’t think we can stop anyhow. We might be far better off to say “Let’s waste less fossil fuel. Let’s burn less fossil fuel. Let’s have our buildings be far more energy efficient. Let’s seriously consider whether we need to drive or whether it might be more fun and more exercise to take a bike, or take a hike.”

I think there are many more decisions that we could make if we looked at “What can I personally do about these things that bother me?” Rather than shouting about what should somebody else do.

DJ: So you mentioned the Pebble Mine, which I’ve heard about quite a lot, and then you mentioned another mine I haven’t heard of. Can you talk about those two mines for people, please?

ES: Yes. The Chuitna mine is a coal mine. It’s on the other side of Cook Inlet. The Kenai Peninsula where I live is on the east side of the Cook Inlet. The west side is relatively undeveloped because there are no roads to it. The Chuitna River is a salmon-bearing river near the town of Tyonek. It’s a native town. And an outfit out of Dallas figured that a couple of miles up that river was some really good coal grounds. So they proposed an open pit coal mine through the river, that would completely disrupt the salmon run. They’d have to build a loading dock a mile out into the Cook Inlet, which is one of the most prolific inlets in the world for saltwater fish, to load the coal to sell to China. And, again, our Alaska representatives thought this would be a great idea if somebody from Dallas, Texas might make a fortune selling coal to the Chinese, despite mining through salmon streams and building docks into the Cook Inlet.

And they touted it: “There might be a few jobs for a few Alaskans.” It turns out the project is completely uneconomical, as the world is turning away from coal, to much cleaner and much cheaper natural gas. But we were not able to get the State of Alaska to say that the salmon deserved a water right. That keeping water in the rivers for salmon should be a priority and that if any other project is contemplated, one thing it cannot do is dewater a river that has active salmon runs. Almost everyone in Alaska feels that we should do all that we can to keep our salmon runs intact. No matter what your political views on very many things, that is a universal feeling of most Alaskan citizens. The idea that the State Department of Natural Resources would not allow the citizens to claim a water right for the salmon, and would not allow the salmon to claim a water right, is just absurd.

So we have a ballot initiative up in Alaska to say salmon have the right to swim up the rivers and spawn. And it’s amazing the industry groups that are fighting that. So that is an example of an absurd project that would have benefited somebody from Dallas, Texas, maybe; at a tremendous cost to local Alaskans, that probably doesn’t make any economic sense whatsoever.

The other one, the Pebble Mine, is actually still active, as the Trump administration told the EPA that they aren’t allowed to say that an open pit gold mine with cyanide leaching might pose a threat to the tributaries of Bristol Bay, which is currently the world’s biggest salmon production fishery. On the face of it, leaching cyanide into the Bristol Bay with a giant gold mine does not seem to be a very good tradeoff for most Alaskans. To potentially devastate the world’s most productive fishery so that a Canadian company with a terrible track record for mine safety could build a mine in the heart of the Bristol Bay headwaters.

Again, it’s one of those value questions. What do we gain and what do we lose? And anybody who looks at that reasonably would say it’s far too risky to the world’s most productive salmon runs. We have been fighting that since its inception. And it’s the kind of thing we can fight for years and years, but like the Izembek Road, Secretary Zinke can turn away years of effort overnight with one stroke of a pen, without any real concept of what he’s doing, except develop and build jobs, which would actually probably take away from development and jobs because it would put all the commercial fishermen out of business.

It’s hard for me to encompass the vastness of these issues. But I don’t think any rational person in the lower 48 who actually owns that land because of the national parks, the national wildlife refuges, the national forests, because of the national United States ownership of Alaska for the benefit of all the United States citizens – to have those things taken away for the benefit of a very few who might make a lot of money just seems absurd. And I wish environmentalists would focus more on those kind of issues, because they are things we could have a big impact on if we were more aware.

DJ: It seems to me that one of the most important things that any of us can do is to protect every wild place and every wild community possible. It’s like my friend John Osborn who really got me into environmentalism decades ago always says, that as things become increasingly chaotic, he wants to make sure that some doors remain open. And what he means by that is that if bull trout are around in 20 years, they may be around in 100, but if they’re gone in 20 they’re gone forever.

ES: Exactly.

DJ: So he sort of takes a “not on my watch” attitude that as long as he is alive, you know, the Selkirk caribou, he will fight for them. And it seems to me that that’s, in the face of these constant onslaughts – because, you know, you have these stories here that are incredibly important, and if we just transpose this anywhere else in the world – yeah, we have a degraded landscape, but there are people in Florida who are fighting similar battles against similar mines. It’s just that it’s a degraded landscape. And it just seems so desperately important to me that we fight for every migratory bird nesting or stopping place and every salmon refuge.

So say whatever you want about that. I’m done.

ES: Yes. When I told you in my bio that I was a rancher, I was dedicated to holistic resource management, meaning how does all this work together? And the bottom line was if I grew more grass, I had more cattle. And if the cattle were more healthy, by rotating them through the grasslands I could have even more grass, and have even more cattle, and even more living things.

There is a fellow that plays Thomas Jefferson, and he quoted that somebody that grows two blades of grass where one grew previously has done more than all the statesmen who ever lived. And that was sort of my philosophy on my ranch. The more grass I had, the healthier it was. The more dung beetles I had eating the cow droppings, the better I was. The more babies of anything I saw in the spring, the healthier my landscape was and the better off I was, the richer I was. That actually translated, because the more cattle I had, the richer I was.

I got so that if I saw more baby rattlesnakes that spring, I was really happy. Things were working. Because stuff was growing that I hadn’t seen growing there before. And if I could have more people aware of that sense, that if we see more babies of any birds, of your deer, your elk, your antelope, your foxes, your bears, your wolves. If each spring brings more rather than less, we are far better off. The more vegetation, trees, wildlife, flowers we see. It’s a very rare person that isn’t happier with that. Very few people can look at the vistas that I have in my back yard, where I can go skiing each afternoon and look out over the wildlife refuge and see the sunset and see the moose and see the wide open ranges.

I get shivers down my spine and think how lucky I am to live here. But the point is, our managers at the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge are working very hard to keep that. Somebody could ruin that in my lifetime. Like your friend, I feel like it’s my obligation. I want my kids and my grandkids to see those sort of riches that have made me immeasurably more wealthy during my life. Again, if a true environmentalist focused on that, we humans can fit in with the world. We don’t have to conquer it. We don’t have to turn it into a concrete jungle with only the plants we want to live, and pink flamingos in the yard. We can appreciate just the miracle of all the natural stuff around us. I find that a lot more rewarding. That’s why I moved up to Alaska to retire. I want to spend the rest of my life enjoying this.

DJ: It seems to me the most important question a person can ask is: “Is the world a better place because I was born?” Is the world a better place because you lived here? By which I mean exactly what you’re saying. Are there more varied thrushes? Are there more rattlesnakes? Are there more daddy longlegs? Are there more banana slugs? Are there more king salmon? It seems to me that’s the most important question.

We have like two or three minutes left. What you’ve said is great, and is there anything you want to leave listeners with, either about these projects in Alaska or about what people should do in addition to what you’ve said?

ES: I think you nailed it. Every day I can get up and say “Can I make the world a better place for everyone, or can I be greedy and take far more than I should or need, and maybe make it better for me,” but then I’ll turn around later and think “I really didn’t make it better. I made it even worse for myself.” If people would look at it that way, I think we’d all get closer to what it is that we want. And I feel very lonely up here in Alaska, fighting for what I think I’m fighting for everybody in the entire world. To give them the chance to see what can be, if we just don’t screw it up. I think people can support our heroes, our Park Service people, our wildlife people. Anybody working toward conservation are the true heroes of the day. And I just appreciate a chance to discuss these kind of things on shows like this, and I can’t say it any better than you did.

DJ: Well thank you so much for your work to protect the wild beings of Alaska. And I would like to thank listeners for listening. My guest today has been Edward Schmitt. This is Derrick Jensen for Resistance Radio on the Progressive Radio Network.