Alaska Groups Pass Resolutions in Favor of Red Dog Mine Permits
Organizations and Villages Band Together in Face of Aqqaluk Deposit Permit Appeal
Anchorage, Alaska - Feb. 12, 2010 - Six Alaska groups have passed resolutions in support of allowing permits for the Aqqaluk Deposit at the Red Dog Mine to become final without appeal. The Northwest Arctic Borough (NWAB) , Maniilaq Association, the Norwest Arctic Borough School District (NWABSD), ANCSA Regional Association, the Traditional Village Council of Kiana and the Native Community of Noorvik have passed resolutions in defense of permitting the mine's Aqqaluk deposit. The deposit would add approximately 20 years to the mine's life.
The mine, located in Northwest Alaska, is situated on land owned by NANA Regional Corporation, Inc. (NANA). It is operated by Teck Alaska. On Jan. 14, 2010, two environmental law firms, on behalf of two environmental organizations and the IRA Councils for two villages filed an appeal of the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation's (ADEC) Certificate of Reasonable Assurance (401 Certification) for the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Permit issued to Teck on Jan. 8, 2010 . Local organizations who passed resolutions in support of the mine are articulating the importance of responsible resource development to the communities and residents of the Northwest Arctic Borough.
"Red Dog Mine is an economic engine for our region and for Alaska," said Northwest Arctic Borough Mayor Martha Whiting. "The mine is the Borough's largest private contributor. Since 2007, we've received more than $25 million from Red Dog's payment-in-lieu-of-taxes (PILT). This money helps us fund important borough-wide education, public service, and infrastructure programs. We want to see responsible development continue at Red Dog for the future of our region."
NWAB and Maniilaq Association passed their resolutions in support of the mine on Jan. 29, 2010, Kiana passed their resolution on Feb. 1st, the NWABSD on Feb. 3rd, the ANCSA Regional Association on Feb. 10th, and Noorvik passed their resolution on Feb. 11th. More organizations and villages are expected to extend their support in the coming days.
"Many people understand that continued Red Dog operations will be threatened by any permit appeal," said Marie Greene, NANA Regional Corporation president & CEO. "Any appeal could result in a mine shutdown unless resolved quickly and it is uncertain how long it would take to resolve an appeal, or what impact it could have on our operations. We're glad that these other organizations are stepping forward in support of our mine and the future of our region."
NANA and Teck have both publically stated that any delay in development of the Aqqaluk Deposit extending beyond the first quarter of 2010 could result in a reduction or interruption of Red Dog production in October 2010.
NANA Regional Corporation, Inc. (NANA) is one of the 13 Alaska Native corporations created pursuant to the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA). NANA's mission is to provide economic opportunities for its more than 12,000 Iñupiat shareholders and to protect and enhance NANA lands. Join the hunt at www.nana.com.