Scott Pegau, who manages research efforts of the Oil Spill Recovery Institute in Cordova, said boats there would historically be gearing up for herring season this time of year.
Because the herring population has yet to rebound to a fishable level, the town now primarily fishes salmon, which comes into season late in April. Otters, sea ducks and a killer whale pod are also still impacted by the spill, he said.
"The Supreme Court's decision on the settlement had a huge impact on the community," said Pegau, who was a student in Fairbanks in 1989. "I suspect (scrapping the ship) will help end the story for a lot of people. They'll be able to say, 'It's finally gone, it doesn't exist anymore.'"
Associated Press writer Nirmala George in New Delhi contributed to this report.
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