U.S. government said to reject industrial road through Alaskan wilderness: NYT

By Andrew Blackman - April 17, 2024
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Majestic, sun-dappled mountains stretch to the horizon.
The headwaters of the Ambler River in the Noatak National Preserve of Alaska, near where the proposed access road would end.Credit…Ken Hill/National Park Service, Alaska

A mining company wants to build road through more than 200 miles (322 kilometers) of Alaskan wilderness to a large copper deposit, the New York Times reports. The road would harm wildlife and communities, according to the U.S. government.

  • The Interior Department plans to announce as soon as this week that the Ambler Access Project shouldn’t proceed, according to two people familiar with the decision. The road is needed to reach a copper deposit worth billions of dollars.
  • Environmental activists and other opponents of the project have long argued that it would pose a threat to wildlife as well as Native tribes that rely on hunting and fishing.
  • Without the road, the copper deposits would probably remain untouched. The decision could lead to a backlash from Alaska’s two U.S. senators and its sole member of Congress, all of whom support the road.
  • Kaleb Froehlich, the managing director of Ambler Metals said the mining company is “stunned” that the Interior Department would deny the project, according to the report.

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