Ambler Newsletter Number One October 2017

Superintendent’s Message

Dear Friends,
Since spring of this year, the NPS has been conducting Alaska Native consultation for the upcoming EEA for the 20 mile stretch of the proposed Ambler Access Road that crosses NPS lands. As of this writing, we've invited 52 Alaska Native organizations to consult on this issue and have received an affirmative response from 29. Some organiza-tions have requested face-to-face meetings, others have joined tele-conferences, and still others have asked for periodic project updates. We view consultation as an ongoing process that will be integrated throughout the project.
In response to your requests, we are initiating a series of periodic newsletters to share project developments and opportunities for you to provide input. Thanks to all those who have taken the time to participate in this process to date. Your input is very valuable and much appreciated.
I look forward to continued dialog with you as the EEA progresses.
Thank you.
Greg Dudgeon, Superintendent
Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve
 

Project Overview

On November 24, 2015, the Alaska Industrial Develop-ment and Export Authority (AIDEA) submitted an application for the Ambler Mining District Industrial Access Project. The proposal is for the construction and operation of a 211-mile long, all-season, controlled-access industrial road connecting the Ambler Mining District with the Dalton Highway. Approximately 20 miles of the proposed road crosses NPS lands (see map on page 2).
The Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA) requires that this road be permitted across NPS lands. In addition, ANILCA directs that an Environ-mental and Economic Analysis (EEA) be prepared for the road across NPS lands in order to: 1) determine a pre-ferred road alignment, and 2) develop appropriate terms and conditions for its use.
Two potential routes across NPS lands were identified in the project application materials. The EEA will examine each of these routes. In doing so, the EEA will assess potential adverse environmental, social, and economic impacts on fish and wildlife and their habitat, as well as on rural and traditional lifestyles, including subsistence activities. The analysis results will identify the route that poses the fewest adverse effects and recommend measures to minimize these negative impacts and enhance positive impacts.
We value your input! Information for viewing the application and submitting comments is provided below.
 

Project Schedule

Tentative Date Planning Phase
Fall 2017 – Winter 2018: Public Input
Winter – Summer 2018: Prepare Draft EEA
Summer 2018: Public Review of Draft EEA
Fall – Winter 2018: Prepare Final EEA
Winter 2018: Release Final EEA
 

EEA Status-at-a-Glance

• The revised final project application has been re-ceived, background studies have been conducted and the EEA analysis is beginning.
• Alaska Native consultation and outreach was initiated in Spring 2017 and continues.
• Public comments are being received as of early October 2017. See below for details.
• Future meeting dates and other opportunities for public comment will be announced by newsletter, press release, letters and email to stakeholders, social media, and the park website. Stay tuned!
 
Both large and detailed view of proposed Ambler Right of Way route
Both large and detailed view of proposed Ambler Right of Way route

Did You Know?

Under ANILCA Section 201(4), the NPS is legally required to permit right-of-way access across NPS lands for the Ambler Industrial Access Project. The purpose of the EEA is not to determine whether a right-of-way should be issued across NPS lands, but rather to identify the preferable route, and to develop terms and conditions for the right-of-way permit.
 

To Submit Comments

Preferred Method: Online at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/Ambler
Or contact: Greg Dudgeon, Superintendent
Gates of the Arctic National Park & Preserve
4175 Geist Rd, Fairbanks AK 99709
Email: yuga_ambler_road@nps.gov
 

Helpful Links

Project Application Materials: http://www.ambleraccess.com/SF299.html
NPS Project Website: https://www.nps.gov/gaar/learn/management/ambler-row.htm

Last updated: February 15, 2018

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 30
Bettles, AK 99726

Phone:

(907) 692-5494

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