Log in

View Full Version : Two more months

03-15-2013, 10:22 PM
Just wanted to see if anyone has gotten the dredge permits for the 2013 yet, I picked mine up this week. I asked FNG if you needed a permit for a small backpack drill that can take core samples, he didnt know, and wanted me to get back to him on it if I found out. So my question to all is would you need any special permit for this?

Steve Herschbach
03-16-2013, 06:10 AM
Generally Allowed Uses on State Land http://dnr.alaska.gov/mlw/factsht/gen_allow_use.pdf

Recreational gold panning; hard-rock mineral prospecting or mining using light portable field equipment, such as a hand-operated pick, shovel, pan, earth auger, or a backpack power drill or auger; or suction dredging using a suction dredge with a nozzle intake of six inches or less, powered by an engine of 18 horsepower or less, and pumping no more than 30,000 gallons of water per day. An authorization is required from ADF&G-Habitat prior to dredging in fish bearing streams.

Actually, ANY dredging requires a permit, now from Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC). Dozers, excavators = permitting. Simply ask DNR when in doubt.

Miners Guide http://www.blm.gov/pgdata/etc/medialib/blm/ak/aktest/minerals/minerals_pdfs.Par.14567.File.dat/miners_guide_12-09.pdf

Small Dredge and Highbanker Permit DEC


03-16-2013, 05:12 PM
I thought the DNR Fish Habitat permit was also accepted by EPA/DEC for small miners. Did this change and I now need two permits?

Steve Herschbach
03-16-2013, 07:33 PM
Good question. Used to be that way but not sure now. We will find out unless somebody already knows.

03-16-2013, 08:27 PM
Thanks Steve. I sure am going to miss you.

03-17-2013, 09:48 AM
In Alaska;

If you are discharging into public waters;

YOU need a APDES Mechanical Placer Miners General Permit. (Number AKG370000). This has to do with the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation, Department of Water, Division of water compliance program.

There are annual report requirements;

I won't try to summarize because it has technical requirements. It involves water monitoring and record keeping.

Contact them at 907-269-4632. or email chris.foley@alaska.gov .

In my personal opinion - it is better to get out ahead of the program. Don't wait to get caught in a regulatory issue of "non-compliance" and the associated possible fines, etc.

This is a relatively simple, straight forward process of measuring turbity above and below your operation. Meeting certain requirements and submitting a report.

Yes, it's a new requirement. It's been in the works for about 5 to 6 years.

They will issue an "Authorization Number". I know - I have one. :)

I also noticed AKG370000 is the base number for my operation i.e. under APMA?

There's a different permit AKG375000 for small operations.

- Geowizard

03-17-2013, 11:18 AM
Wow what a garbage piece of work. Under Suction Dredge Engine size they are talking about dredges with an engine size greater than 18 hp in freshwater and 23 hp in saltwater. Under The Type of Discharge they are talking about dredges with intake diameters less than or equal to 6" and pump engines less than or equal to 18hp in freshwater and 23hp in saltwater. Now which is it? Over 18hp in freshwater, less than or equal to 18 hp in freshwater or both?????

How am I supposed to be able to comply when the regulations say different things on different pages in different paragraphs?

Steve Herschbach
03-17-2013, 01:43 PM
Actually this is just the latest version of old General Permit stuff been around for many years. It was EPA and now DEC, gets reissued every 5 years.

Dave was referring to the small dredge permits Chuck, not the mechanical, and whether a F&G Habitat permit automatically conferred coverage under the DEC permit, as was the case with the EPA permit.

Dave, are you trying to run some kind of borderline operation where hp between 18hp and 23hp is an issue for you?

03-17-2013, 02:03 PM
I have a 4" dredge with a Honda 6.5 hp engine and pump and a 2" dredge with a smaller honda engine and pump. In one place the regs they talk about the permit for the larger than 18 hp engine and then in another part of the regs they talk about the permit for engines smaller than 18hp. After reading the regs and seeing that the regs conflict with themselves on different pages, I still do not know if I need the permit or not.

I guess the thing to do is call Nick Dallman in the morning and ask him if I need the permit or not.

03-17-2013, 03:25 PM
Its confusing to say the least. Less than 6" on AK State Lands needs no dredge permit. As far as a Habitat Permit from F&G....Im going to be everywhere so I cant list all creeks and streams in advance and I have no project...bs redtape.

03-17-2013, 03:34 PM
"If you are discharging into public waters;

YOU need a APDES Mechanical Placer Miners General Permit. (Number AKG370000). This has to do with the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation, Department of Water, Division of water compliance program."

DEFINE Discharge....taking water from a source and pumping it over a sluicebox and allowing it to flow back into itself without adding to or altering it is not discharging as far as dredging is concerned. How did dredges get construed and defined as FACILITIES? This water quality crap has gone too far. I forget which state said its not discharging when you dont add to or change the material moved in the waterway...

03-17-2013, 03:52 PM
Hi Jeff,

Discharge is what happens when water flows out of your sluice box and into the stream.

An ADFG permit is required..."including" Ordinary use i.e. recreational placer mining...


The issue as I see it right now, is that Alaska is being inundated with placer miners that aren't complying with the regulations. I dread thinking that irresponsible mining activity will cause more regs, fewer permits and greater enforcement. Greater enforcement can only be afforded by larger bonding amounts and higher permitting fees.

- Geowizard

03-17-2013, 03:56 PM
Its confusing to say the least. Less than 6" on AK State Lands needs no dredge permit. As far as a Habitat Permit from F&G....Im going to be everywhere so I cant list all creeks and streams in advance and I have no project...bs redtape.

You still need a F&G Habitat Permit for each creek and stream that you will be dredging. They are easy to get, but the longer you delay in getting the Habitat Permit, the more behind F&G will get and the longer it will take to get your permit. You need a copy of the Habitat Permit BEFORE you go dredging or highbanking. I usually get my permit in January.

Steve Herschbach
03-17-2013, 04:11 PM
Jeff, did you not read the information I posted? You guys are making this too hard.

6" with 18hp and smaller is considered a recreational dredge by state of Alaska. That DOES NOT mean it does not require a permit. ALL dredging in Alaska requires a permit.

Dave, the DEC Small dredge permit is same as the old EPA permit and authorizes all dredges with a 6" and smaller nozzle opening and 18hp or less. Try not to find reasons in the fine print to make things hard on yourself. The F&G habitat permit used to automatically cover you for EPA due to a "memorandum of understanding" between F&G and EPA. I do not know if F&G and DEC have the same understanding and would not bet on it.

My advice, get the F&G Habitat Permit for streams that require it and get the DEC permit always. They are free and it will not hurt having both. It certainly can hurt not having one if you need it. There is a lot of stuff in the DEC permit not in the F&G permit so I would not trust that the F&G permits covers both. If they say it does, frankly, I personally will still get both.

03-17-2013, 04:17 PM
About the APDES Small Size Suction Dredge Placer Miners General Permit Number AKG375000: Page 8
1.6 Notification Requirements
Owners or operators of facilities eligible for permit coverage must meet the following notification requirements.
1.6.1 Facilities Eligible for Automatic Coverage The following facilities, other than those located in areas listed under Part, are eligible for automatic coverage under this GP: Suction dredges with pump engines less than or equal to 18 hp in freshwater and 23 hp in marine water, and Highbankers To be automatically covered, owners or operators of eligible facilities must: Receive a Fish Habitat Permit from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G), as described under Part 1.6.3, or

If I am comprehending this correctly, this means that I am automatically covered now as it was under EPA??

03-17-2013, 04:20 PM
Thanks Steve, Good advice to get both permits just to be covered.

Steve Herschbach
03-17-2013, 05:35 PM
Yes Dave, this is a slightly modified version of the old EPA permit now administered by DEC. Since it was just reissued it is a General Permit good for about 5 years and is free. No big deal - everyone with a 6" NOZZLE OPENING or smaller running 18HP or smaller - this is the dredging permit you need. It now also covers highbankers. No cost, no monitoring, no reports.

Medium Dredge (Larger than 6" NOZZLE OPENING) or Mechanical do have monitoring and reporting requirements.

james a.
03-19-2013, 08:04 AM
January.I have a 4 in dredge.I live on the mid-west coast of ak.I sent my aplication to Nome.They sent it to anchorage,anchorage sent it to fairbanks.
After couple months of calling an confirming,Laura Jacobs in fairbanks got threw with it an had the o.k. with adf&g,dnr,an army corp of eng.
All kinda stuff for the litle dredge.Her number is.907-459-7284.