The Buckhorn Exploration Proposal

Timeline


2008

June

BLM approves a small-scale amount of exploration without public review. (The small scale approvals were based on a small amount of activities that could be exempt, if not part of a larger program.)

2009

May

USDA Forest Service (FS) approves exploration on National Forest lands to determine the feasibility of possible expansion

December

Kinross Gold Corporation, under the name Echo Bay Exploration Inc. (EBE), submits a “Notice of Intent” (NOI) to explore for minerals on claims it owns in the name of Crown Resources on public land administered by the USDA Forest Service.

2010

February

Kinross (EBE) submits another “Notice of Intent” (NOI) to explore for minerals.

March

Notice of Intent process is used in an attempt to segment the large proposed exploration project into smaller projects to avoid environmental review.

July

Kinross (EBE) submits the initial Plan of Operations, entitled “Buckhorn Mountain Exploration Project: BLM and USFS Plan of Operations and DNR Reclamation Permit Application.”

July

Kinross (EBE) submitted a revised “Plan of Operations” to explore for minerals on claims owned in the name of Crown Resources on public land administered by the USDA Forest Service, BLM and DNR. If approved, this plan would open up 10,000 acres to extensive exploration on an expedited timeframe.

September

The proponent requested authorization to:

 

  • Construct up to 675 new drill sites
  • Drill up to 965 exploration holes
  • Construct up to 33 acres of water conveyance and storage facilities
  • Develop up to eight acres of ancillary disturbance
  • Construct up to 72.3 miles (380,810 linear feet) of new drill roads
  • Utilize up to 20 drill rigs simultaneously, 24/7

September

Kinross (as Echo Bay) moves forward with drilling after DNR approves just under the amount that would require environmental review (near the Bolster Creek tributary of Myers Creek).

September

BLM also approves a small amount of exempt exploration, claiming exemption from environmental review on account of the small size of the segmented project pieces.

November

Scoping for proposed Buckhorn Exploration Project

2011

March

Forest Service recognizes the proposed 2011 Drilling Program as an action connected to the larger 2012 Exploration Project EIS; decides not to categorically exclude the additional proposed exploration.

2012

February

Forest Service issues Buckhorn Mountain Exploration Project EIS Work Plan, with map depicting proposed road building and drilling locations near Jackson/Cedar Creek roadless area and near Chesaw, two areas of resource conflict.

August

Forest Service issues updated Buckhorn Mountain Exploration Project EIS Work Plan.

2013

July

As part of developing new work plan draft, more thorough reports are requested in order to meet the agencies’ expectations for an assessment of the direct impacts of exploration drilling on surface water and ground water resources. Included in the request are: cumulative effects given the active mine, an assessment of mine dewatering impacts on groundwater levels, and impacts of mine operations on groundwater quality.

2014

March

As part of developing new work plan draft, more thorough reports are requested in order to meet the agencies’ expectations for an assessment of the direct impacts of exploration drilling on surface water and ground water resources. Included in the request are: cumulative effects given the active mine, an assessment of mine dewatering impacts on groundwater levels, and impacts of mine operations on groundwater quality.

May

Echo Bay Exploration (EBE, a fully owned subsidiary of Kinross Gold) announces their withdrawal of the Buckhorn Mountain Exploration Project.

for more information read the
Extensive Buckhorn Exploration Proposal 2010-2014:

Kinross Gold Corporation of Toronto, Canada, under the name Echo Bay Exploration Inc. (EBE), claims the right to explore on
public lands by virtue of the General Mining Law of 1872.

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