Bethel Public Meeting Will Discuss Donlin Gold Water Management

Jan 23, 2018

Donlin Gold predicts that it can extract 33 million ounces of gold over the initial 27 years of the proposed mine. The gold is present in microscopic flecks embedded within the extracted sample rock.
Credit Katie Basile/KYUK

State regulators are gathering in Bethel tonight to discuss water and waste management at the Donlin Gold Mine.

The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has tentatively decided to issue two permits to Donlin Gold. One authorizes the mine to discharge its wastewater into Crooked Creek, provided that Donlin treats it first. The other allows Donlin to dispose of other waste, including contaminants like cyanide.

The agency wants to hear from the public before making any final decisions. At tonight’s meeting, DEC representatives will explain the permits to the public and answer any questions, then listen to residents’ comments and concerns.

The meeting begins tonight at 5:30 p.m. in the Cultural Center. This is the second of three meetings that the DEC is holding on Donlin Gold’s water and waste management permits. They held the first in Aniak last week and will hold a final discussion in Anchorage this Friday.