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Permitting and Environmental Constraints: Their Impact on Mining in Alaska.

Sherman GE
For Reference Only At Bureau Libraries :28 pages
This report presents a U.S. Bureau of Mines study on the cost of mine permitting and compliance with environmental regulations in Alaska. Permitting requirements and procedures for placer and lode mines are discussed. Placer miners must comply with newly established water quality regulations and effluent treatment requirements. To estimate the impact differing treatment options (no recycle, 100-pct recycle, and flocculation) have on a placer mine's rate of return, three models (1,500 1,000, and 500 yd3/d) were simulated. Rates of return for these models show a marked decrease as increasing effluent treatment is applied. The incremental increase in operating cost from one treatment option to the next is relatively small; however, the opportunity cost of lost production is significant and accounts for the decreasing rate of return with increased effluent treatment. Lode mines face greater permitting and compliance costs than similarly sized placer mines owing to the impact of the operation. Direct permitting costs for lode mines range from 2 to 6 pct of total project cost, with 4 pct being the most common figure cited by industry. Total permitting and compliance costs are approximately double those for direct permitting costs. Indirect costs associated with compliance include mitigation, monitoring, and reclamation.
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For Reference Only At Bureau Libraries
Page last reviewed: October 8, 2021
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division