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Ambler Mining District

Explored primarily by NovaGold Resources Inc., the Ambler Mining District lies 180 miles southeast of the Red Dog Mine, and about 140 miles east of Kotzebue.


The Ambler Mining District -- in the middle Kobuk River Valley in Northwest Alaskan arctic -- has several major deposits currently being explored for zinc, copper, gold, silver, and lead. NovaGold's main interest is in the "Arctic" deposit, which is part of a volcanogenic massive sulfide occurrence that carries risk of acid mine drainage when mined.  These "stranded" resources will need major transportation infrastructure to be developed.  Governor Sean Parnell is dedicated to building a road or rail line to the region as part of his "Roads to Resources" agenda. NAEC is currently working on a report that will summarize the plans to create access to this mining district.


Current Status

NovaGold conducted a major drilling program in the region over the summer of 2011 and has completed a Preliminary Economic Assessment. The Alaska Department of Transportation since 2010 has received $5.25 million to study a road or rail into the region, contracting with Anchorage based consulting firm DOWL HKM.  In September of 2011, DOWL HKM finalized a series of technical studies that evaluate the many options for accessing this remote region.



Residents of the area are primarily Native Alaskan, and maintain a subsistence lifestyle — residents collect berries in the summer, fish for salmon and other freshwater species, and hunt caribou, moose and bears for food. Industrialization of the area could have adverse impacts to water resources, wildlife habitat and subsistence resources. 


last modified September 23, 2011 05:14 PM

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