Western coastal tundra area open
On Dec. 28, the Alaska Department of Natural Resources said the Western Coastal Tundra Opening Area was opened to off-road travel. The area extends from the Kuparuk River west to the Colville River.
DNR’s Gary Schultz told Petroleum News this morning that there still isn’t enough snow in the Eastern Coastal or Lower Foothills areas to open them to general off-road travel.
“However, it is snowing and blowing now,” so that might change when the storm is over, Schultz said.
“Some approved vehicles can go on the tundra now,” he told Petroleum News Dec. 27, referring to rolligons, Tucker Sno-Cats and the new Tundra Cat, “but we’re waiting on snow to allow conventional vehicles out there.”
DNR oversees off-road travel for all state lands between the Canning and Colville rivers within 120 miles or so of the coast.
State to offer Mount Spurr geothermal leases competitively
A preliminary best interest finding has been issued for a proposed Mount Spurr geothermal exploration area. The Alaska Department of Natural Resources Division of Oil and Gas said Dec. 27 that comments must be received on or before Jan. 28 to be considered in the final best interest finding which is expected to be issued in March.
Mount Spurr geothermal lease sale No. 3 would include 16 tracts of state-owned land, a total of approximately 36,057 acres, northwest of Trading Bay along the southern flank of Mount Spurr, including the east end of Chakachamna Lake and part of the Chakachatna River. The area is entirely within the Kenai Peninsula Borough, approximately 40 miles west of the village of Tyonek, within townships 13 and 14 north, ranges 16 and 17 west, Seward Meridian.
The finding is available on the division’s Web site at: www.dog.dnr.state.ak.us/oil/.
Editor’s note: see story in Jan. 6 issue of Petroleum News.