Reacting to criticism of the existing suction dredge mining regulations — which did little to protect fish populations — California Fish & Game has released its draft regulations for suction dredge mining, and public comments on the revised regulations will be accepted until March 5, 2012.
You can download a draft of the new regulations here.
A few highlights include:
A county-by-county listing of streams and rivers where suction dredge mining is prohibited or controlled
A reduction in the number of permits available for issue statewide (1500)
Establishment of special coldwater refugia areas on the Klamath River
Revisions to regs designed to eliminate impacts to fish
Currently, suction dredge mining is prohibited by AB120, which established a five-year moratorium while new regulations were developed
This from the Fish & Game website:
The public comment period closes at 5:00 p.m. on Monday, March 5, 2012. All comments must be postmarked or received by DFG on or before that date and time. The revised regulations, all related written comments received by DFG, including the names and addresses of commenters, and DFG’s responses to written comments, will be included in the DFG’s official public record.
Please mail or hand-deliver written comments to DFG at: Suction Dredge Program, Revisions to Proposed Amendments, Department of Fish and Game, Northern Region, 601 Locust Street, Redding, CA 96001.
Written comments may also be submitted to DFG via email at: email@example.com. Please include the following in the subject line for all comments submitted via email: Comments re Revisions to Proposed Amendments.