Agencies lay out course on Kensington mine project

Posted: Tuesday, July 29, 2003

JUNEAU (AP) State and federal agencies involved in analyzing the proposed Kensington mine have outlined a schedule for permitting the project.

State and federal agencies signed a ''memorandum of understanding'' to help complete the environmental approvals for the mine, according to an announcement Monday.

It was signed by the state Department of Natural Resources, U.S. Forest Service, Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Coeur d'Alene Mines Corp., which plans to operate the gold mine in Southeast Alaska near Juneau, anticipates receiving all necessary permits for the project by January 2004, the company said.

The agreement outlines the roles that each agency will play in the project but does not set out a deadline for completing the work.

A draft supplemental environmental impact statement is expected to be completed in October and the mine could be operating as early as mid-2005, said Steve Hohensee, Forest Service project manager.

The Kensington mine is located about 45 miles north of Juneau. It contains an estimated 1.8 million ounces of gold reserves. The mine project is estimated to cost about $510 million and produce about 175,000 ounces of gold annually, the company said.

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