Anna Rose MacArthur, KNOM - Nome
The Inuit Circumpolar Council is holding a meeting in Nome next week. The topic is food security, and the goal is to create a framework to understand the issue from an Inuit perspective.
The Arctic is warming two to three times faster than the rest of the globe. As temperatures increase, permafrost melts, releasing carbon dioxide, and the growing season lengthens, absorbing CO2.
Iditarod teams are expected in Nome tonight, and some mushers still do not have a place to sleep once they get there. Mushers have long depended on Nome residents to provide them a place to rest after the almost 1,000 mile journey. However, over the last five years, it’s become more difficult to find hosts to house mushers.
Most speed records are broken by seconds or minutes. Wednesday, a Fairbanks cyclist demolished the Iditarod Trail Invitational record by almost a full week.
Alaska could soon have a Human Breast Milk Bank. The Milk Bank would operate under the Alaska Blood Bank and supply the state with donor milk. The Blood Bank has submitted a proposal to their board and is awaiting a decision. KNOM’s Anna Rose MacArthur reports.
The release of the Arctic Deep Draft Port feasibility study has been put on hold, indeterminably. The Alaska U.S. Army Corps of Engineers had said the study would be issued for public review the first week of March. However, in a recent Joint Transportation Committee meeting, Lorraine Cordova, Project Technical Lead, said the entire port project is being pushed back a “few months.”
Coast Guard Admiral Thomas Ostebo visited Nome last week to outline summer plans for Western Alaska. The plans are part of the Coast Guard’s Alaska operation for the year, officially titled Arctic Shield 2014.
Vessel traffic is increasing through the Bering Strait, and no regulations exist to monitor that movement. The United States Coast Guard wants to change that.
Climate change and increased Arctic activity are projected to offset declines in toxic human emissions. A recent study from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology predicts warmer temperatures will cause contaminants stored in the earth to re-emit back into the atmosphere. In addition, increases in Arctic vessel traffic and oil and gas drilling will multiply pollutant concentrations.
The Alaska Army Corp of Engineers met with Army corp leaders in Washington D.C. on Monday, to discuss where the Corp will construct a deep draft port in Western Alaska. Three sites on the Seward Peninsula are potential locations for a new deep water port.
The St. Lawrence Island community of Savoonga has received an additional bowhead strike from the Alaska Eskimo Whaling Commission. The allotment permits the community to go after one more whale this season. The community harvested two bowheads already this month. But with its current economic disaster and lack of walrus meat, Savoonga hopes another whale will bolster food stores this winter.
Savoonga, a community on St. Lawrence Island, harvested two bowhead whales last week, both of them female. While the island is praising the immense intake of muktuk and meat amid an economic disaster, Theodore Kingeekuk, a drummer on the island, is celebrating another part of the anatomy — the uterus.
For over 80 years, hundreds of polar bear skulls from St. Lawrence Island have been sitting in the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. Now, under NAGPRA, the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act, the artifacts may be returning to the tribe that buried them.