Rachel Waldholz, Alaska's Energy Desk - Anchorage

Rachel Waldholz, Alaska's Energy Desk - Anchorage
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Rachel Waldholz covers energy and the environment for Alaska's Energy Desk, a collaboration between Alaska Public Media, KTOO in Juneau and KUCB in Unalaska. Before coming to Anchorage, she spent two years reporting for Raven Radio in Sitka. Rachel studied documentary production at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism, and her short film, A Confused War won several awards. Her work has appeared on Morning Edition, All Things Considered, and Marketplace, among other outlets. rwaldholz (at) alaskapublic (dot) org | 907.550.8432 | About Rachel

The village of Newtok has requested a federal disaster declaration from President Barack Obama to address ongoing erosion and thawing permafrost. It’s one of the first tests of whether the nation’s disaster relief laws can be used to deal with the slow-moving impacts of climate change. Listen now

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has released its final plan to increase the population of Cook Inlet’s beluga whales and get them off the endangered species list. Listen now

Alaska villages facing rapid erosion have been trying to move for decades. But they’ve always run up against one major problem: money. Then this year, for the first time, the federal government made tens of millions of dollars available to relocate a small Native village threatened by climate change. The problem is that village is in Louisiana, not Alaska. Listen Now

It’s been more than a year since President Barack Obama visited Alaska and became the first sitting president to travel above the Arctic Circle. The trip was designed to draw attention to climate change in the lead up to last year’s international conference in Paris. And the president went out of his way to highlight Alaska villages threatened by rapid erosion. But as Obama prepares to leave office, most of those villages find themselves no closer to a solution. Listen Now

Alaskans have heard stories for years about how climate change is affecting subsistence hunting and fishing. Now researchers are trying to quantify that impact– and they’re finding the biggest problem is access. Listen Now

President-elect Donald Trump has chosen ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson as his nominee for secretary of state. National attention has focused on Tillerson’s close ties to Russia, but he – and his company – also has a long history in Alaska. Listen Now

The village of Newtok plans to request a federal disaster declaration from President Barack Obama before he leaves office. The village is facing rapid erosion due to climate change, and officials say a disaster declaration may be the best chance to unlock federal funds for relocation before the existing village becomes uninhabitable. Listen Now

In its final days, the Obama administration is forging ahead with a promise to include Alaska Native tribes in the management of fish and wildlife on federal land. Listen Now

Hydaburg Mayor Anthony Christianson has been appointed the new chair of the Federal Subsistence Board. Listen Now

The U.S. Interior Department has announced its new five-year plan for oil and gas leasing in federal waters, and it does not include any new lease sales in the Arctic. The plan calls for one sale for northern Cook Inlet, in 2021.

According to an announcement this week from the World Meteorological Organization, 2016 is on track to be the warmest year ever. If current trends continue, it would be the third straight year of record-breaking heat. Listen Now 
Shell's Noble Discoverer drill rig leaving Unalaska Monday afternoon. (Photo by John Ryan, KUCB - Unalaska)

In the aftermath of Donald Trump’s upset election victory, President Barack Obama still has two months left in office to close out policy decisions and try to cement any final pieces of his legacy. One open question is offshore oil and gas leasing. Listen Now

Rapturous Trump supporters said they'd expected this outcome all along, while surprised Republican officials ticked off a wish list of priorities that suddenly seemed within reach.

While many parts of the country -- and the world -- were stunned by Donald Trump's upset win Tuesday night, there was one place in Alaska where people claimed they saw it coming all along.

Former North Slope Borough Mayor Edward Itta died Sunday in Utqiagvik, formerly known as Barrow. Family members said the cause was cancer. He was 71. Listen Now

The State of Alaska and a dozen Native organizations have filed a petition with the U.S. Supreme Court, asking it to overturn a ruling that designated vast swaths of coastal Alaska as critical habitat for polar bears.

One of the most-watched races in the state is happening in and around Fairbanks, where two longtime politicians are running in a match-up that could help decide control of the Alaska Senate. Listen Now

Tonight we visit the Trump campaign headquarters in Anchorage, to hear from Margie Ward. Ward is 68. Her husband, former state senator Jerry Ward, is the Alaska State Director for the Trump campaign. She's a longtime activist in Republican politics, but she says Donald Trump is the first presidential candidate she's volunteered for since Pat Buchanan's primary run in 1996. Listen Now
A self-described "progressive Republican," Sam Moore voted for Mitt Romney, John McCain and George W. Bush. But this time around, he says he can't support Donald Trump. He's voting for Libertarian Gary Johnson, instead. (Photo by Rachel Waldholz/Alaska's Energy Desk)

Samuel Moore voted for Mitt Romney, John McCain and George W. Bush. But, he says, he can’t support Donald Trump. Listen Now

Last week, Juneau saw its first snow before Fairbanks for the first time in some 70 years. With the exception of the Southern Kenai Peninsula and Southeast Alaska, the entire state is below normal for snow — from Anchorage to Fairbanks to Barrow. That’s leaving a lot of Alaskans wondering, is this a sign of what’s to come?