Editors note: This letter was sent to Russell Dann, president for Riversdale Alaska LLC, Mat-Su Borough Assembly member Warren Keogh and other members of media.

To the editor:

On June 20, I received an apology from you regarding obtrusive and unnecessary overflights at my mountain homestead. In a separate letter, you addressed our assemblyman, Warren Keogh: “It is unfortunate that there is a temporary inconvenience for residents during the geophysical survey and I can only apologize for this.”

Yesterday, on July 26, my farm and cabin were again in the direct and very low flightpath of your hired helicopter. Apologies from Riversdale Alaska and Era Helicopters is not enough. If a sling-load lets go, there could be permanent damage to my barn and my home, perhaps even to my children. As it is, my laying hens have cut their production in half since the onset of your survey. The Anchorage FAA Flight Standard District Office has been again made aware of your disregard for public safety and federal regulations.

“Temporary inconvenience” does not adequately describe or alleviate the stress that your activities have brought to my family, my livestock and my community. I consider it to be only a “temporary inconvenience” for you to fly around my farm rather than hovering over it. Despite your words, the message you are sending is that you don’t give a damn for the people who live here, any more than you gave a damn for the African villagers that you moved off their land when they were unfortunate enough to be sitting on the coal you wanted in Mozambique. Since you aspire to turn my home into a peninsula surrounded by a 10,000-acre strip-mine, I wonder if you’ll refer to our uprooting as a “temporary inconvenience” as well.

It’s a triple whammy. Destroy our families with the long-term stressors associated with your coal project. Destroy our state’s land and water with the physical assaults that mining coal requires. Destroy our planet with the heavy metal contaminants produced by burning coal.

And all of this for a buck. It is inconceivable that all of this is legal. Oh wait, it’s not. Quit overflying my home.

Lisa Stevenson


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