Lauren Rosenthal, KUCB - Unalaska
Lauren Rosenthal is a reporter for KUCB in Unalaska.
Peninsula communities still aren’t reporting any ashfall from Pavlof Volcano’s newest eruption, which started on Tuesday.
In less than six weeks, the Tustumena ferry is supposed to wrap up repairs and set sail to Southwest Alaska. But the shipyard says that delivery date isn’t looking realistic. As the state faces yet another blown deadline for getting the Tustumena back in service, they’ve started looking for other ships to pick up the ferry’s route. And it doesn’t have to be a perfect fit.
There’s still some rumbling beneath the surface, and a few small explosions here and there. But for the most part, Pavlof Volcano on the Alaska Peninsula has quieted down.
A factory trawler that frequently participates in the Bering Sea pollock fishery caught fire Monday afternoon.
Pavlof Volcano isn’t showing signs of slowing down. It erupted all through the weekend, though not at levels that disturb international air traffic. But as KUCB’s Lauren Rosenthal reports, the volcano’s done enough to stop regional air service to Western Alaska.
It’s been more than 70 years since Unalaska came under attack during World War II, but you don’t have to look hard to find the remnants. The community is littered with old gunnery installations, battered Quonset huts and bunkers – some of which are being preserved for posterity. But there’s history, and then there’s hazard, and the shells and bombs that keep washing up on Unalaska’s shores fall somewhere in between.
Atka is home to just 71 people. But that’s about to change. The city’s processing plant wants to quadruple its workforce — and with that, the community is ramping up a campaign to replace its dilapidated clinic.
When the Tustumena ferry went in for repairs this winter, it was supposed to be fixed up in time for the 2013 season, but the ferry is still nowhere near ready. Now, the state has been forced to cancel service to Western Alaska for the entire month of June.
As the Alaska Marine Highway System approaches its 50th anniversary, the ferry is struggling with its identity. Under intense pressure to cut costs, the ferry’s managers are trying to get back to basics — transporting Alaskans and their freight.
The Kulluk and the Xiang Rui Kou heavy lift vessel have left their anchorage in Unalaska — but the ships aren’t on their way to Asia yet. The vessels have been moved to Broad Bay, just outside of town, says Coast Guard Lt. Jim Fothergill.
After three weeks in port, Shell’s Kulluk drill rig is set to leave Unalaska on Tuesday. The rig has been loaded on the Xiang Rui Kou heavy lift ship in Captains Bay. Coast Guard Lt. Jim Fothergill says the vessels are scheduled to leave at 10 p.m. Tuesday night.
The executive in charge of Shell’s troubled Arctic drilling program is stepping down. David Lawrence was Shell’s vice president for North American exploration. He’s been with the company for almost 30 years. Now, a spokesman says he’s leaving “by mutual consent.”
Preparations are officially underway for the Kulluk drill rig’s trip to Asia. Early Tuesday morning, three tugboats maneuvered the Shell rig out of its berth in Unalaska and onto the deck of the Xiang Rui Kou heavy lift vessel.
Shell’s Kulluk drill rig is almost ready to leave Alaska waters. The heavy lift vessel that will take the damaged oil rig to Asia for repairs arrived in Unalaska on Sunday afternoon. The Xiang Rui Kou was escorted to its anchorage in Captains Bay by three tugs.
After a few quiet months, Cleveland Volcano is waking up. Cleveland’s last recorded eruption was in November. Then, at the end of January, the Alaska Volcano Observatory’s satellites picked up warming temperatures on Cleveland’s surface. And they found a new lava dome growing in the summit crater. It’s 330 feet in diameter — just shy of a football field.
The Shin Onoe cargo ship has left Unalaska ahead of schedule, and without incident. Coast Guard Lt. Jim Fothergill says the vessel passed its sea trials and a Coast Guard inspection, and left Summer Bay around 3 p.m. Wednesday.
The Northern fur seals that breed on the Pribilof Islands have been on the decline for decades, a smaller colony just 200 miles away is thriving. A new study of these colonies is challenging scientists’ assumptions about what marine animals need from their environment — and how they get it.