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This Edition Sponsored by: Koncor Forest Products Company

August 2001

A periodic publication of the Resource Development Council, Inc.

New trucks designed to reduce the potential for spills and the loss of concentrates as “fugitive dust” will begin operating along the DeLong Mountain Transportation System in August. Truck wash stations have already been put in place and other dust reduction practices are being prepared. The photo at right shows a tight seal on the new carriers.

Red Dog road study in perspective

The National Park Service recently released a study that measured the level of dust on road side mosses along portions of a 52-mile road connecting the Red Dog Mine to port facilities on the Chukchi Sea in Northwest Alaska. The study shows elevated levels of metals on moss leaves that dramati- cally decrease with distance from the road. The release of the study brought about a significant flurry of concern regarding the potential impacts to the region.

The road is technically known as the DeLong Mountain Transportation System (DMTS). The zinc and lead concentrates produced at Red Dog, the world’s largest zinc mine, are trucked down the road, stored for the winter then shipped to various world ports during the short summer shipping sea- son. The Alaska Industrial Develop- ment and Export Authority (AIDEA) owns the road and port.

“The NPS study has provided us with valuable information that is useful as we evaluated our transportation practices.”

  • -

    John Key


While the state owns the DMTS road itself, the road corridor is a con- glomerate of state lands, NANA Native corporation lands, and a twenty-four mile section that traverses through Cape Krusenstern National Monument. The

section that crosses through the monu- ment is the subject of the National Park Service study.

The lands within this road section are part of a key land exchange agree- ment between the National Park Ser- vice and NANA. NANA agreed to ex- change extensive lands with the De- partment of the Interior in 1985 to se- cure the 24-mile access corridor through Cape Krusenstern National Monument. The corridor was to provide access for development of the local mineral re- sources, an important consideration for this economically-depressed region.

“Red Dog represents the future for many people in our region,” said Helvi Sandvik, president of NANA Develop- ment Corporation. “We had no eco- nomic development opportunities in our region. It took ten years for our share- holders to weigh the pros and cons of mine development. We know we made

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