ALASKA PENINSULA CORP. TO OPERATE TOLL ROAD
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.