Alaska News Nightly: August 10, 2007

Former U.S. Attorney Wev Shea talks about the note he recieved from Senator Ted Stevens that’s become the latest focus of the federal corruption investigation. Plus, Russian biologists were in Anchorage this week to work out a plan for protecting the Chukchi Sea polar bear population. Those stories and more on tonight’s Alaska News Nightly, broadcast statewide on APRN stations.

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Stevens note says he spent more than $130k on home renovations
Dave Donaldson, APRN – Anchorage
FBI agents investigating the relationship between VECO executives and Senator Ted Stevens are now studying a handwritten letter in which Stevens says he paid “over $130,000” for renovations to his house in Girdwood. Former VECO Chairman Bill Allen oversaw the work on the house while Stevens was away — having invoices sent to him before they went to Stevens. The note was sent to former U.S. Attorney Wev Shea, and APRN reporter Dave Donaldson spoke with Shea earlier today.

Stevens cautious on Pebble Mine but bullish on responsible development
Lori Townsend, APRN – Anchorage
Senator Ted Stevens thinks Alaska can cultivate new mining, oil and gas prospects while preserving fisheries and other renewable resources. Stevens came to the APRN studios earlier this week to talk about resource development and a range of other issues.

Polar bears bring U.S. and Russia together for treaty and research
Annie Feidt, APRN – Anchorage
Russian biologists were in Anchorage this week to work out some of the details of a treaty to protect polar bears that wander between the U.S. and Russia. The treaty was officially implemented earlier this year, but before all its provisions can take effect, scientists need to figure out some basics about the population.


Pollock shifting hundreds of miles north, costing Bering Sea fishermen
Charles Homans, KIAL – Unalaska
Alaska pollock is the biggest fishery in the world and one of the few that’s considered sustainable. But as the waters of the Bering Sea warm, the local ecosystem is changing. Pollock are moving farther north and fishermen are growing concerned.

Greenland ice yielding 100,000 years of climate data
Duncan Moon, APRN – Anchorage
“Immersed in an infinity of snow” sounds like a description of the long Alaska winter. But that’s how a reporter with Alaska Newspapers is describing summer — on the Greenland ice sheet. Dustin Solberg is in Greenland this week, traveling to one of the world’s most important climate research sites. He says he spent two days at the summit of the ice sheet at more than 10,000 feet.

Photo: Dustin Solberg

Troops to Lower 48: You call that hot? Puh-leeze.
Libby Casey, KUAC – Fairbanks
The heat waves hitting the Lower 48 pale in comparison with the temperatures facing Alaska Army National Guard troops serving in Kuwait.

Trespassing to protest war in Iraq
Libby Casey, KUAC – Fairbanks
An Alaskan peace activist facing charges of criminal trespass has continued to use his court appearances to make statements against the Iraq War. Rob Mulford was arrested last winter for refusing to leave the local offices of Senator Ted Stevens and Senator Lisa Murkowski.