The Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority (AIDEA), a state agency, has proposed building a road across part of the southern Brooks Range. The preferred route would pass through Gates of the Arctic National Preserve – adjacent to the Gates of the Arctic Wilderness and National Park. The 211-mile road to the so-called Ambler Mining District would facilitate huge mining operations, benefitting a private Canadian company at the expense of Wilderness and wildlife.
We urge you to take action by October 29 on the Bureau of Land Management’s Ambler Road Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS).
The proposed 211-mile road would stretch west from the Dalton Highway (aka the Haul Road to the North Slope) to the mining claims. View the proposed route. Along the way it would cross Gates of the Arctic National Preserve and the Kobuk Wild and Scenic River, both ecologically significant public lands which make up part of the largest remaining roadless area in the country. The route would cross nearly 3,000 streams, 11 major rivers, 1,700 acres of wetlands, and major caribou migration routes. The road would also bisect a wide swath of the southern Brooks Range, which is home to grizzly bears, wolves, Dall sheep, moose, wolverines, and three different caribou herds.
Alternative A in the DEIS is the most egregious option for the proposed road because of its proximity to Gates of the Arctic Wilderness and National Park. Gates of the Arctic Park and Preserve is one of our wildest parks – with no roads, no trails, and no established campsites. Road noise, dust, and vehicle headlights at night would degrade the area’s wild character, and this new road would lead to motorized intrusions in the Wilderness.
Wildernesses in Alaska, even those as large as Gates of the Arctic, derive much of their extraordinary values from the expanse of wildlands surrounding them which are critical to maintaining the integrity of these great places. If built, the road would undoubtedly lead to more use and motorized intrusions into the Wilderness.
The road is proposed to be closed to the public, but after the road is built pressure would surely mount to open it to the public, compounding the negative impacts to this great wild expanse. Similar promises on past projects have been broken, leading to permanent and widespread impacts from ATVs, motorboats, airstrips, and hunting and fishing pressure, all impacting wildlands, wildlife, and local traditional subsistence uses.
Please tell the Bureau of Land Management that you oppose this destructive and unnecessary road.
Tell the Bureau of Land Management that you oppose this destructive and unnecessary road.
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Please visit www.WildernessWatch.org to see what other actions you can take to protect and defend America's National Wilderness Preservation System.