Dan Bross, KUAC - Fairbanks
Dan Bross is a reporter at KUAC in Fairbanks.
The U.S. Army is looking at greater cutbacks than previously considered, and there could be Alaska impacts. Ft. Wainwright and Joint Base Elmendorf Richardson are among posts nationwide being considered for reductions as part of the Army’s “2020 Force Structure Realignment.”
A bridge being built across the Nenana River will open up access to long sought after state agricultural lands.
A physicist with the Union of Concerned Scientists is calling the Ground Based Midcourse Missile Defense System, less than proven, despite Sunday’s successful test over the Pacific Ocean.
Interior miners aren’t happy with changes proposed to federal permits for small scale placer operations that impact water resources, including wetlands. Dozens attended an Army Corps of Engineers public meeting in Fairbanks last week on the proposals.
The Fairbanks area has seen some impressive rainfall over the last few days. National Weather Service meteorologist John Lingass reports 2 to 3 inches around Fairbanks, and 3 to 4 inches over the hills northeast of town. The heavy rains are causing flooding along rivers.
Interior miners aren’t happy with changes proposed to federal permits for small scale placer operations that impact water resources, including wetlands. Dozens of miners attended an Army Corps of Engineers public meeting in Fairbanks this week on the proposals.
Water is being used to flush fuel out of the tundra, where a tanker truck rolled off the Dalton Highway earlier this month. The Nana Corporation truck is estimated to have leaked in excess of 2,500 gallons of fuel near milepost 299, about 110 miles south of Deadhorse.
A Fairbanks woman is part of a team trying to get a new party on the Alaska ballot. Maria Rensel is running as an Alaska Constitution Party candidate for lieutenant governor. Resnel says the campaign is all about breaking up the lock Republicans and Democrats have on Alaska politics.
Mangers of the 100-Mile Creek Wildfire response are bracing for high winds. A Red Flag Warning is in effect for the 23,000 acre fire west of Delta Junction from noon to midnight, calling for south winds gusting to 35 miles per hour, and humidity in the 25 percent range. Over 500 firefighters are assigned to the blaze and Fire Information Officer Sarah Sarloos says a lot of work has been done.
The Fairbanks North Star Borough assembly passed a truancy ordinance last night. The ordinance lines out local policy addressing chronic unexcused absence from school including fines for repeated offenses.
The Air Force has paused a plan to demolish the HAARP facility, as it reconsiders options for transferring its ionospheric research infrastructure near Gakona to another entity. That could be the University of Alaska Fairbanks.
Alaska is not alone in its conflicts with the federal government over land management. Leaders in some Lower 48 western states want Alaska to join an effort to gain control of federal lands within their borders.
The first natural gas targeted development project on the North Slope is expected to come on line as early as next year. The Pt. Thompson Field is being developed by Exxon Mobil, 60 miles east of Prudhoe Bay.
A Canadian man started a horseback trip from Deadhorse to Mexico on Tuesday. Rider Len Crow is embarking on the 6,700 mile journey to raise money for orphanages, including a facility in Guadalajara, Mexico, where his ride is scheduled to wrap up in 11 months.
On the Kenai Peninsula, rain over the weekend helped further knock down the Funny River fire, but in Interior Alaska, a wild fire in the Delta Junction area gained major acreage over the weekend. The 100 Mile Creek Fire, sparked by an earlier prescribed burn on military land, went from about 700 acres to more than 6,000, as high winds fanned flames.
Remotely operated vehicles will be plying Prince William Sound and the Gulf of Alaska this summer, measuring acid levels. The float and glider vehicles are the latest technology deployed through a long running monitoring project overseen by University of Alaska Fairbanks Ocean Acidification Research Center Director Jeremy Mathis.
A University of Alaska Fairbanks committee is recommending cuts to close an expected 12 to 14 million dollar FY 15 budget deficit. The Planning and Budget Committee was charged with developing options to address rising costs and decreased state funding.