Mines in Alaska
There are currently seven hardrock mines operating in Alaska, five of which are in the Interior and Western Arctic. Additional projects are in the exploration and permitting process. It is essential that ongoing operations at these mines and all new projects comply with laws and permit conditions meant to protect Alaska's waters, lands, and wildlife.
There are five hardrock mines in the Interior and Western Arctic currently operating and additional mining projects have been proposed. State environmental oversight of mining activities is coordinated by the Department of Natural Resources Division of Mining, Land, and Water (Large Mine Permiting Unit), the Department of Environmental Conservation (Contaminated Sites Program, and the Division of Air Quality, Division of Water), the Department of Health and Social Services (Public Health Division) and the Department of Fish and Game (Division of Habitat). Federal environmental oversight is primarily conducted by the Environmental Protection Agency.
Currently Operating Mines
Fort Knox mine complex consists of two open-pit gold mines and is located about 25 miles northeast of Fairbanks. Learn more about mine and NAEC's involvement.
Nixon Fork is an underground gold mine located about 35 miles northeast of McGrath. Once closed down, it resumed operations in 2007.
Pogo mine is an underground gold mine located about 85 miles southeast of Fairbanks. Learn more about Pogo Mine and NAEC's involvement in on-going operations.
Red Dog mine is currently the world's largest producer of zinc. Learn more about Red Dog Mine operations and NAEC's environmental concerns.
Rock Creek mine is an open-pit gold mine located about 42 miles east of Nome on the Seward Penninsula. Learn more about mining operations and environmental concerns.
Greens Creek mine is an underground zinc, lead, silver, and gold mine located on Admiralty Island in Southeast Alaska.
Mining Exploration Projects
The Donlin Creek Project is a proposed gold mine located 13 miles north of the village of Crooked Creek, and about 270 miles northwest of Anchorage. The permitting process is expected to begin in 2009.
Exploration for nickel, copper, and platinum is currently occurring at Tangle Lakes. The area being explored provides important caribou winter habitat and is a favorite area for recreation. Learn more about the exploration at Tangle Lakes and the NAEC's concerns.
In 2006, BHP Billiton signed a five year contract to conduct exploration activities in the Western Arctic.
The Livengood Project is located on a large gold resource located along the Trans Alaska Pipeline, about 70 miles north of Fairbanks.
The Ambler Mining District is a resource rich deposit of copper, lead, zinc, silver, and gold that covers 35,000 acres 140 miles east of Kotzebue.
The Kensington Gold Mine project is an underground gold mine located about 45 miles northwest of Juneau. Operation is expected to being in 2010 and tailings will be deposited directly into Lower Slate Lake.
The Pebble Project is a copper, gold, and molybdenum project located in the Bristol Bay Region. It is currently in the pre-permitting phase.
Mines Where Operations Have Ceased
Illinois Creek mine was an open-pit gold mine. Mining operations ceased in 1998 and has been deemed "reclaimed" by the State.