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Donlin Gold’s Draft EIS by the numbers.
months of public comment ending on May 31, 2016
cooperating federal and state agencies, and Native groups at each stage of the NEPA process
villages visited in the Yukon-Kuskokwim region as well as the city of Anchorage for public meetings on the draft EIS
comments, letters, and statements received during public comment period
Were there any major issues raised in the town hall meetings on the Donlin Gold project?
We were encouraged to see people from the region’s communities participate in the draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) review process. Donlin Gold is a core business in the Yukon-Kuskokwim (Y-K) region. It ful lls an important goal of the Alaska Native Settlement Claims Act (ANSCA): to provide economic prosperity for Alaska Natives through the responsible development of land they selected because of its mineral potential.
Following completion of the six-month public comment period at the end of May 2016, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the lead permitting agency, began reviewing and categorizing the comment submissions to evaluate and initiate the work needed to complete the  nal EIS. More than 500 letters and public statements were received from Alaska Native Corporations, business groups, communities, individuals, the State of Alaska, and federal agencies. Overall, few new issues were raised – and most matters had already been addressed at length in the
draft EIS. Matters of particular focus included the barge tra c
on the Kuskokwim River; the potential impact to subsistence resources and users; how to mitigate and respond in the unlikely event of a tailings dam failure – and how the proposed designs minimize such risks; and plans for reclamation and environmental monitoring post-closure. Airing of these issues was welcomed, and in fact represents the purpose of a public comment period. We expect that these comments will be addressed in the  nal EIS.
Carefully reviewing the draft EIS comments is an important part of preparing the  nal EIS, ensuring that all technical issues are thoroughly considered and addressed in the analysis. With Calista Corporation and The Kuskokwim Corporation, our Native Corporation partners, we continue to openly and transparently communicate with and listen to the residents of the Y-K region as the project advances through permitting.
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