Center for Science in Public Participation

Slate Cove in Berners Bay,
just north of Juneau, AK
Credit: Skip Gray
The CENTER for SCIENCE in PUBLIC PARTICIPATION provides training and technical advice to grassroots groups on water pollution and natural resource issues, especially those related to mining. seeks to focus the debate on factual issues, as brought to light by its technical analyses, and whenever possible to seek consensus and win-win solutions. also performs policy related work with federal, state and tribal regulatory agencies on the implementation of water quality, waste disposal, and mining reclamation regulations.

was organized in 1997 to provide technical assistance to public interest groups on issues related to mining and water quality. The Center has a staff of seasoned professionals with experience from the mining industry, academia, and government.

Technical support is often needed by grassroots groups and tribal governments in several areas -- for example, presenting technical arguments to the state and federal agencies that have permit authority over large industrial and natural resource development projects. Providing this support in a timely manner can be critical to influencing a fast moving development proposal. Because experts are not readily available, groups must often use whatever volunteer technical assistance is available locally; or rely on technical consultants that, if available, are expensive. In addition, because of the very close relationship between the mining industry, its technical consultants, and the academic community, it is very difficult for non-profit groups to gain access to technical and financial expertise on mining. is in a unique position to provide this service to the non-profit community.

The Center is now providing technical support to groups in the United States and Canada, with a limited amount of international work. has technical professionals located in Montana and British Columbia. The Center has recently provided support to groups in Washington, Nevada, New Mexico, Idaho, Montana, Alaska, British Columbia, Yukon, and Labrador.