Pebble inks deal with Native corporation - Must Read Alaska
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Thursday, July 9, 2020
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Pebble inks deal with Native corporation


One of the largest landholders in the Bristol Bay region has reached an agreement with the Pebble Limited Partnership to allow a transporation corridor through its lands to the rich Pebble prospect, with its copper, gold, and molybdenum mineral deposits.

The Native-owned Alaska Peninsula Corp. will operate a toll road and charge Pebble for access to its mining property in Western Alaska for the construction and operation of the proposed Pebble mine.

The agreement gives APC not only toll payments, but other fees from Pebble before and during the construction and operation of the mine, and the parties have agreed to negotiate a profit-sharing agreement to ensure APC shareholders benefit directly from Pebble’s mining profits from the region.

APC and several of its villages, such as Kokhanok and Newhalen, will enjoy lower cost power and greater economic activity, the corporation said. And APC will be a preferred contractor with Pebble, which means it will have preferred status when bidding on Pebble-related contracts on APC lands.

“Among our leading priorities as an Alaska Native corporation is to manage and develop our lands responsibly, in a manner that creates employment opportunities for our shareholders but also respects our subsistence values and culture,” said Brad Angasan, APC’s spokesman and vice president of corporate affairs. “That’s exactly what this deal represents for APC, as well as securing us an important seat at the table as the Pebble Project advances.”

Angasan said APC and Pebble have worked together for many years to create a mutually beneficial and respectful relationship. He said the APC board believes a responsibly designed and operated mine at Pebble can make a positive long-term contribution to the lives and well-being of APC shareholders and villages.

“We have faith in the federal and state regulatory and permitting process that is currently evaluating Pebble’s proposed project,” Angasan said. “If Pebble can be permitted, and it is demonstrated that clean water, healthy fisheries and other important natural and subsistence resources will be protected, then APC will support the Pebble mine and stand beside PLP as a partner in its development.”

Under the terms of the agreement, APC has granted Pebble a secure right to use defined portions of APC lands in the future development of transportation infrastructure (including roads, pipelines, ferry landing sites and related land uses) if the proposed mine is successfully permitted and proceeds to construction and operations.

The permitting process is underway with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and APC will. monitor the progress to ensure that the mine will not impact fisheries in the region.

“If this project can be built and operated safely, we want to ensure our shareholders benefit to the greatest extent possible,” Angasan said.

APC is the merged Alaska Native village corporation of South Naknek, Port Heiden, Ugashik, Kokhanok and Newhalen, and  is one of the largest private land owners throughout the Bristol Bay region, with approximately 400,000 acres.

The corporation has more than 900 shareholders and the company works in government and commercial services, including  remediation, construction services, administrative management services, environmental consultation, transportation management, exploration services and electrical construction.

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Written by

Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

Latest comments

  • The result of uninformed who voted NO.

    See Red Dog Roadway poisoning.

    Only positive statements printed thusfar. May as well wow censor censor thus far. Ramming it thru.

    In Lower 48 it’s called habitat and wetlands protection. A Federal offense for develop.

  • BBNC will be the next corporation to fall. An ore ship churning up smolt who live on the surface of the water will surly have its toll, along with the water devastation from acid mine drainage and the lowering of the water table. So sad that money matters more to people than water and fish ……

  • For a bunch of folks crying Save Our Salmon, they collapsed pretty quickly. A share of the profits and a toll to the troll, and the salmon are all miraculously saved. Way to stand by your commitments BBNC. Money talks and, well, you know the rest.

  • Thanks Suzanne, for posting these fact informative, pro Alaska articles. Funny how the save the salmon, and shaft the rest of the industries that AK founding fathers built the premise on, have tried to play this whole thing down. Good to see the locals are truly interested in high paying jobs, benefits, lower electricity charges, and a quality of life that is severely lacking now! Keep up the fine work Suzanne!

  • Big Dig knows how to demonstrate, wine and dine. It’s the aftermath of this affair, when there is no more profit, that goodwill and good will be nonexistent.

  • An intitiative that simply states:
    It is unlawful to destroy, remove or alter a salmon producing waterway. I think would pass unanimously …

  • Pebble is in a roll. The anti Pebble money man Gillam has passed away and the money to oppose Pebble has dried up. The colossal failure of BM 1, a new Governor who told all the miners at the luncheon that Alaska was “ open for business” and a GOP dominated Alaska legislature will work with Trumps about to be new guy in the environment agency. And Pebble will start getting permits. All those opponents of Pebble who were celebrating their victory were a bit premature. Next to support Pebble will be BBNC. Then it’s “ game over”.

    • And there will go the last Great Salmon Run, Bristol Bay way of life,
      Bring on Pebble, let the party begin.

      Life will be so much better….

      • That gold isn’t going to mine itself, Mark.

        • Do we have to Mine it ?

  • There are still a few BM 1 folks out spreading lies. Hey hippies, at least read the actual proposed mining plan instead of your usual echo chamber propaganda, that way you won’t sound so ignorant.

    What do these statements even mean?
    “there will go the last Great Salmon Run”
    “water devastation from acid mine drainage”
    “goodwill and good will be nonexistent”
    “May as well wow censor censor thus far”

    • Ok, this is what I know for certain about the Pebble Plan.
      The mine is smaller than originally planned. It will be 2000 feet deep, it will have 3 containment reservoirs for the mining waste, they will be removing less salmon producing streams, they will have an ice breaking fleet of barges going back and forth across lake Iliamna, there will be a port with secondary processing at ocean front.
      They will require natural gas from Cook Inlet to power their operations .
      And they promise to take care of the mining waste forever .

      So Steve, do you like this plan ? The mine is 5 miles from Lake Iliamna and 1 1/2 miles from the upper reaches of the Nushagak, ( the koktuli River )

      And do you think Steve after they have spent billions of dollars developing all of this that they won’t want to expand their operation since the area has so much more ore in the ground ?

      It just doesn’t seem like it’s worth the risk….. open pit mines of this size do have a track record…. and it isn’t a good track record .

      Not wanting to sound extreme, but there will be affects to the area…. I’m guessing you are good with it …

      • Mark,

        What do these statements mean?
        “there will go the last Great Salmon Run”
        “water devastation from acid mine drainage”

        Where do you think the material in the computer you are using comes from? What about your car, and your house, your cell phone, etc., etc., etc.

        Am I ok with responsible mining done with the most stringent regulations in the world vs. a mine in China or Africa with little or no environmental regulations? Yes I am absolutely in favor of responsible and environmentally regulated mines.

        Will there be affect to the area, yes just like the ground under the house you live in was affected by you.

        Have you ever been to Bristol Bay?

  • Steve,
    The same company who engineered the Mount Polly mine which failed after just a few short years and dumped millions of tons of toxic waste in Canada in 2014, is the same engineering firm that Northern Dynasty has hired.? Does this stringent oversight cover dam failures ? Or the dam that failed in Colorado in 2016 and millions of gallons of waste into the downstream rivers.
    Yes, all the so-called stringent rules and regulations don’t stop man made failures .
    I have actually hunted the one once huge mulcchatna caribou Hurds and walked on the very land that Pebble is on…. I have Commecially fished the waters of Bristol Bay since 1980, my fathers ashes are in the waters of Bristol Bay…..

    Steve, do you know that the first thing that Pebble has to do dig their 2000 foot hole is to drill some 30 water wells and pump down the water table of the area….. how many salmon producing rivers and streams do you suppose will disappear ?

    I’m glad you are asking questions, because many of the folks of Alaska don’t know these answers..

    So please ask more questions: I have been involved with the scientist of the Pebble project since 2006

    • It’s good to hear that you’ve actually been to Bristol Bay, most who weigh in on the subject have never stepped foot in the region. Since you’ve been there you can attest to how small of an impact the proposed mine area will have on such a vast landscape. You can also attest to the economic conditions in the area and how this project will help improve those conditions for the local economy. Or are you only concerned about taking what you can from Bristol Bay during a month or maybe two and then spending your spoils elsewhere?

      I used to commercial fish in the Bay and know the area fairly well, including how many fishermen have zero interest in the area other than the salmon that return every year. It can be a very self serving viewpoint that many have taken.

      • Good for you, and thank you for standing your ground with truthful and fact based counterpoints. It’s always funny and sad to watch folks whose emotions are driving them make inflamed and misinformed arguments.

        The watershed effected is less than 1/10th of one percent. It’s not possible to end that “last great salmon run” if they actually tried to. Ridiculous zealotry.

  • The original mine plan removed 110 miles of salmon waters, and the smaller plan removes half that much. So it is a plan that is somewhat more easier to accept. There are other concerns, the mine is a copper mine by volume. The affect of copper on the the salmon smolt, the ice breaking ore ship crossing the lake, the containment reservoirs leaching sulfuric acid, the lowering of the water table. Then you have to run a gas line over to the mine site.
    Building a road across the salmon enriched rivers to Oceanside.
    It’s a daunting task, very expensive, they figure 2 billion dollars just to get things going.
    I just can’t imagine that they would settle for the smaller mine plan knowing full well that there’s ore to be had all around.
    The area is known to have only 3 percent ore, so they will have to dig up a lot of dirt to get just a hand full of ore.
    I think it will have a little more impact to the area than my house does, I’m not an engineer.
    With all the scientist they have had in the area over the years, they have found salmon smolt in more waters if the area than they originally thought.
    And to minimalize the impact is not being up front as well.
    And Pebble promises to take take care of the containment reservoirs for perpituity …. I don’t think that’s very realistic either.
    What will happen is they will apply for expansion and just keep mining the area…..
    The affects to the area will come slowly, and we’ll just accept whatever loss of salmon there will be….
    California, Oregon, Washington. Didn’t loose their salmon over night…
    But Pebble would be the start of the perminent decline of of salmon habitat in the area…

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