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Ed Schoenfeld, CoastAlaska - Juneau

Ed Schoenfeld is at CoastAlaska in Juneau

USFS Celebrates Big Thorne Decision As Environmental Groups Weight Options

USFS Celebrates Big Thorne Decision As Environmental Groups Weight Options

The U.S. Forest Service says a Friday court decision allowing a timber sale will help speed changes in Tongass National Forest logging. But opponents say it will damage other Southeast Alaska industries.

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March 23, 2015
Three ferries tied up at the Ketchikan Shipyard in the winter of 2012. Commercial users will likely pay higher rates beginning next winter. (Ed Schoenfeld/CoastAlaska News)

Alaska Ferry Rates Rising For Commercial Customers

You’ve probably heard that state ferry fares are going up in May. The Alaska Marine Highway System also plans to increase commercial rates later this year.

March 23, 2015

Campbell To Serve as Interim Director of DOT Southcoast Region

A Department of Transportation insider is the new manager of the agency’s division overseeing Southeast Alaska. Commissioner Marc Luiken on Tuesday announced Rob Campbell will fill in as interim director of DOT’s Southcoast Region. That includes Southeast, plus coastal Southcentral and Southwest Alaska. Campbell already directs the department’s Central Region, which includes Anchorage and the Matanuska-Susitna Borough.

March 19, 2015

Rupert Delegation Lobbying for Continued Connections

Prince Rupert leaders are in Juneau this week to lobby for continued connections with Southeast Alaska. Budget cuts threaten to reduce state ferry sailings to and from the British Columbia port city. And policy differences have blocked construction of a new ferry terminal there. Rupert Mayor Lee Brain says the marine highway link helps economies on both sides of the border.

March 17, 2015
A Celebrity Cruise Line ship sails into Juneau in 2012 with emissions coming out of its stack. New pollution-control equipment being installed on Alaska-bound and other ships will reduce the emissions plume. (Ed Schoenfeld, CoastAlaska News-Juneau)

“Scrubbers” to Cut Cruise Ship Pollution

Cruise lines that sail Alaska waters are installing new pollution-control equipment. It’s aimed at clearing the air — and meeting new regulations. But it’s also dodging some stronger, more expensive measures. The stuff that comes out of cruise ship smokestacks can cloud the air, leaving a haze over port cities, and plumes along their routes.

March 16, 2015

Fast Ferry Engine Damage Could Affect Service

One of the Alaska Marine Highway’s new ferry engines is down. That could affect service in Southeast and Prince William Sound. Department of Transportation spokesman Jeremy Woodrow says a gear tooth broke Saturday on one of four engines powering the fast ferry Fairweather. Sunday’s sailing was cancelled. The ship, which is temporarily based in Cordova, sails to Whittier and Valdez, though not always on the same day.

March 10, 2015
Feds Turning Tongass Land Over To Sealaska

Feds Turning Tongass Land Over To Sealaska

Sealaska Corp. gets its new land on Friday. The federal Bureau of Land Managementwill sign paperwork that day turning over 70,000 acres of the Tongass National Forest to the corporation.

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March 5, 2015
State Considers B.C. Mines As Promoters Plan Visit

State Considers B.C. Mines As Promoters Plan Visit

The Walker-Mallott administration announced Wednesday that it’s set up a working group to address the transboundary mining boom near Southeast Alaska. The news comes as British Columbia’s mine-regulation agency plans meetings with Alaska fishermen and tribal groups.

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February 27, 2015
Update: Tlingit-Haida OKs Same-Sex Marriages

Update: Tlingit-Haida OKs Same-Sex Marriages

Southeast Alaska’s largest tribal organization has authorized its courts to perform same-sex marriages. The Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska announced its new policy Monday.

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February 25, 2015

Central Council of the Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska OKs Same-Sex Marriage

Southeast Alaska’s largest tribal organization has authorized its courts to perform same-sex marriages. The Central Council of the Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska announced its new policy Monday.

February 23, 2015

300 Villages: Douglas

This week, we’re heading to Douglas- a former gold mining town that’s now part of the Juneau Borough but still maintains it’s unique character. Ed Schoenfeld is News Director for CoastAlaska. He’s also a musician who’s written half a dozen songs about his community.

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February 20, 2015
Mine Dam Collapse Report Cites Bad Design

Mine Dam Collapse Report Cites Bad Design

Poor design led to last summer’s catastrophic failure of a British Columbia mine tailings pond. That’s the conclusion of an investigation ordered by provincial officials and released Friday.

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February 2, 2015
Walker Says Rupert Terminal Will Be Rebuilt

Walker Says Rupert Terminal Will Be Rebuilt

Gov. Bill Walker says he’ll continue pushing for construction of a new ferry terminal in Prince Rupert, British Columbia. His administration cancelled project bidding Jan. 21 due to a dispute over construction materials.

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January 27, 2015

Business Leaders Meet For Innovation Summit

More than 200 business leaders, researchers and policy-makers gather in Juneau this week for the 2015 Innovation Summit.

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January 26, 2015

Walker Names Transportation Commissioner

There’s a new boss at the state agency overseeing, roads, airports and ferries. Gov. Bill Walker on Friday named Marc Luiken as his commissioner of the Department of Transportation and Public Facilities.

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January 23, 2015
Tongass Supervisor, Deputy, Leaving The Forest

Tongass Supervisor, Deputy, Leaving The Forest

The Tongass National Forest will soon be without its two top officials. Forest Supervisor Forrest Cole plans to retire in April after about a dozen years in the job. He’s overseen timber sales, stewardship efforts and other agency programs in Southeast Alaska. Cole’s deputy, Tricia O’Connor, is moving to a new Forest Service job in Wyoming.

January 8, 2015
A sign near Juneau’s Auke Bay Ferry Terminal points to the end of Glacier Highway. The road would be extended about 50 miles to a new terminal closer to Haines under a state plan that’s temporarily on hold. (Ed Schoenfeld/CoastAlaska News)

Despite Spending Freeze, Juneau Access Road Effort Continues

Work continues on the Juneau Access Project, despite Gov. Bill Walker’s spending freeze. But it doesn’t involve moving dirt or pouring concrete.

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January 7, 2015
Canada Approves Controversial Mine Plan in Southeast

Canada Approves Controversial Mine Plan in Southeast

A controversial mine near Southeast Alaska’s border has won approval from Canada’s federal government. That worries critics, who say the development could pollute salmon-bearing rivers.

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December 22, 2014

Canada Approves Controversial Mine Near Southeast Alaska’s Border

A controversial mine near Southeast Alaska’s border won approval from Canada’s federal government on Friday.

December 19, 2014
A computer-generated map of Southeast Alaska shows additional land (in brown) beyond today’s shoreline. (Courtesy Jim Baichtal)

Coastline Search Leads To First Residents’ Camps

The Earth’s crust is more flexible than you think – especially in Southeast Alaska. Growing and shrinking icefields and glaciers, and rising and falling oceans have altered the region’s coastline over time.

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December 19, 2014