News Miner, 10/29/92
By Kate Ripley
Golden Valley Electric
Association customers could see lower rates if the proposed Fort Knox
gold mine on Gilmore Dome goes into production.
of GVEA and Fairbanks Gold Mining Inc., the developer of the proposed
open-pit gold mine 15 miles northeast of town, discussed the mine's
power needs before an audience of about 120 people at Schaible Auditorium
on the University off Alaska Fairbanks campus Wednesday night.
GVEA currently has
a surplus of generating capacity, so power purchases by Fort Knox will
help spread the costs of maintaining and operating those generators,
officials with the electric cooperative said.
uses only half the power Golden Valley has available with its 200-megawatt
system. The Fort Knox mine would require 35 megawatts.
GVEA officials said
they do not know exactly how much rates would be lowered should the
a subsidiary of Amax Gold Inc. of Colorado, hopes to win approval from
various local, state and federal agencies by next year to begin mining
36,000 tons of ore per day by 1995.
meanwhile, would have to pay for the $8 million GVEA power line extension,
GVEA's engineering services manager, said Golden Valley evaluated four
possible routes for the lines.
route would run a power line from the Gold Hill substation near the
Parks Highway to Goldstream Valley. The line would pass throught the
Moose Creek drainage to the old Murphy Dome Road, and across the Elliott
and Steese highways to the proposed mine are 15 miles northeast of Fairbanks.
Of 27 miles of new
transmission line, 7 miles would cross undisturbed land in the Moose
Creek drainage, said Greg Wyman, a senior engineer with the utility.
A power line already
stretches along a ridge between the new Murphy Dome Road and the old
Murphy Dome Road. But the line is too small to carry the electricity
needed by the mine. Since the line will need to rebuilt anyway, the
Moose Creek route would be cheaper because it would be more direct and
require fewer corner poles.
Three other possible
routes would take the line along the backside of Farmers Loop and through
Fox, from Fort Wainwright up the Steese and from North Pole straight
north. Sylvia Ward, of the Northern Alaska Environmental Center said
the mine's power demand could force GVEA to fire oil-driven generators
in North Pole more often.