From Exploration to Closure of a Large-Scale Mine: Environmental and health impacts of the proposed Donlin Gold Mine on the watershed, communities and people of the Yukon-Kuskokwim Region

December 7, 2021
4:00 pm US Eastern Time

Slides & Resources


Challenging the Donlin Gold Mine – Earth Justice – https://earthjustice.org/cases/2021/challenging-the-donlin-mine and https://earthjustice.org/features/donlin-gold-mine-alaska-native-tribes-yukon-kuskokwim

The Impact of Mining in the Kuskokwim – a webinar series organized by the Native Village of Georgetown. Episode 1 will be with Earthjustice on December 8, 2021, followed by speakers from Orutsararmuit Native Council on January 12, and lastly speakers from Donlin Gold on January 26 – More information and registration can be found at https://www.georgetowntcenvr.com/miningwebinar

Donlin Gold Project Final Environmental Impact Statement – Army Corp of Engineers – https://dnr.alaska.gov/mlw/mining/large-mines/donlin/pdf/dgfeis.pdf – Map of mine site showing elements during construction, operations, and closure on page 2-154 (Figure 2.3-39)

Donlin Gold Project – Ground Truth Trekking report with background information (last updated in 2015) – http://www.groundtruthtrekking.org/Issues/MetalsMining/Donlin-Creek-gold-mine-prospect.html

Join the Alaska Collaborative on Health and the Environment (CHE-Alaska) on Tuesday, December 7 for a lunch-and-learn webinar entitled “From Exploration to Closure of a Large-Scale Mine: Environmental and health impacts of the proposed Donlin Gold Mine on the watershed, communities and people of the Yukon-Kuskokwim Region.”  Large-scale mining in the Y-K Region will impact the health of communities, ecosystems, and wildlife for generations to come. This webinar will be a presentation of expected and predictable short- and long-term impacts of development comparing to similarly sized projects around the globe and focusing in on regional considerations unique to the Y-K region and proposed Donlin Gold Mine. We’ll be hearing from Dr. David Chambers, founder and president of the Center for Science in Public Participation (CSP2) and Mary Herrera-Matthias, Environmental Program Director for the Orutsararmuit Native Council (ONC). We’re very grateful for their willingness to share their expertise and insight on this important issue, and we hope you can join us on Tuesday, December 7.

Featured Speaker

David M. Chambers, Ph.D., P. Geop. is the founder and president of the Center for Science in Public Participation, a non-profit corporation formed to provide technical assistance on mining and water quality to public interest groups and tribal governments. Dr. Chambers has 45 years of experience in mineral exploration and development – 15 years of technical and management experience in the mineral exploration industry, and for the past 30 years he has served as an advisor on the environmental effects of mining projects both nationally and internationally.  He has Professional Engineering Degree in physics from the Colorado School of Mines, a Master of Science Degree in geophysics from the University of California at Berkeley, and is a registered professional geophysicist in California (# GP 972).  Dr. Chambers received his Ph.D. in environmental planning at Berkeley.  His recent research focuses on tailings dam failures, and the intersection of science and technology with public policy and natural resource management; financial assurance for mine closure and post-closure; and, the water impacts of mining.

Mary C Herrera Matthias is an Alaskan Native; Yupik descendant on her mother’s side, born and raised in Bethel, Alaska. While growing up she was always drawn to the outdoor environments, exploring plants, insects, animals, fish, and found it within herself that she could never move away from her homeland, where the blueberries bloom and where the salmon run near and in the Kuskokwim River. She is a daughter, a mother, a wife, a sister, an aunty, a subsistence gatherer, a hunter, a stewardess of the lands and waterways and an environmental advocate. She must praise God in all the things that He has directed her path in and not boast about all my achievements because He deserves all the glory and honor.
In her working career, She has taken on passionately and has served as an administrative Environmental Program Director, serving 11 years building capacity with EPA’s Indian General Assistance Program (IGAP) all together. She also served as ONC’s Natural Resources Director for a couple of years which took her further into the environmental realm and she never knew she'd be lead into the path where she’d become more involved in fighting for the protection of their cultural and traditional subsistence lifestyle in which they are challenged with the Donlin Gold Mine.
This call is hosted by the CHE-Alaska Partnership, which is coordinated by Alaska Community Action on Toxics (ACAT). It will last for 60 minutes and will be recorded for the call and webinar archive.