A state agency is extending the deadline for the proposed Donlin Mine’s draft reclamation plans. The project would be one of the biggest gold mines in the world.
The Alaska Department of Natural Resources (DNR) says the public can submit comments until September 6. The agency also extended the deadline for comments on how Donlin plans to pay for the clean up.
Last week, the Yukon Kuskokwim River Alliance, a local working group that opposes the mine, sent a letter to DNR and the Department of Environmental Conservation saying there simply wasn’t enough time for the public to weigh in — specifically in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta.
It’s the height of the subsistence season, and most people are gathering berries and fishing to stock up for the winter, the letter says, which means people can’t find the time to read and comment on a 400-page document.
The local working group also asked for a public hearing. Faith Martineau, the executive director for the permitting process at DNR, says the agency is considering that request.
Meanwhile, the Army Corps of Engineers is on track to roll out its record of decision on the mine next week. The decision will determine how the project moves forward.
- But the senator is worried about where the money will be diverted from. “I would have concerns, particularly if it’s coming out of Alaska military construction, which is not only important for our state,” Sullivan says. “It’s really important for the national security of our country.”
- The Alaska Marine Highway System has stopped selling tickets past September. That's in anticipation to deep cuts that could be fatal to the state ferry network.
- In a major development, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers released the draft environmental impact statement for the proposed Pebble Mine on Wednesday.
- Three people were seriously hurt and four vehicles demolished in a five-car wrong-way crash on the highway between downtown Juneau and the Mendenhall Valley.