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Tim Ellis, KUAC - Fairbanks

Tim Ellis is a reporter at KUAC in Fairbanks.

The contractor working on the Alaska Railroad's Tanana River bridge at Salcha has nearly completed work on the structure, shown here in an earlier stage of construction. It's the first phase of a larger project to extend the railroad to the Delta Junction area.
(Credit Alaska Railroad)

Tanana River Bridge Nearly Done, But State Officials Can’t Predict Fate of Next Phase

Alaska’s longest bridge is pretty much done. The 3,300-foot structure now spans the Tanana riverbed just west of Salcha, providing the military with year-round ground access to its training ranges on the far side. But, state officials don’t yet know where they’ll get funding to begin work on the next phase of the Northern Rail Extension project.

June 13, 2014

New EPA Carbon-Pollution Rules Will Spark Rate Hikes In Fairbanks

Golden Valley Electric Association customers can expect a rate hike to pay for new federally required pollution controls. The EPA’s emissions control requirements announced today, will be phased in over coming years in an effort to cut greenhouse gas emissions from power plants.

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June 2, 2014

Prescribed Interior Burn Extends To Over 6,000 Acres

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.

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June 2, 2014

Golden Valley Electric Loses Biggest Customer

Golden Valley Electric Association is scheduled to lose one of its biggest customers this week – the Flint Hills Resources refinery in North Pole. But GVEA is working on plans to hook up another industrial customer next year that will buy nearly as much electricity as the refinery.

May 27, 2014

Clearwater Lodge Burns Down

The Clearwater Lodge near Delta Junction burned to the ground this morning. The rustic lodge was a popular gathering place for fishermen, birders and others who come to the Clearwater River.

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May 15, 2014

Flint Hills Begins Shutting Down Fairbanks Refinery

Officials with Flint Hills Resources-Alaska began shutting down the company’s North Pole refinery on Thursday.

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May 1, 2014

Earth Day Celebration Helps Mark Wilderness Act’s 50th Anniversary

Earth Day will be celebrated with a concert in Fairbanks on Tuesday. It’s part of a summer long series of events marking the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act and other environmental laws.

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April 21, 2014
Members of Team Greenland spill out onto the Carlson Center floor during Sunday's Arctic Winter Games opening ceremony.Photo by Tim Ellis, KUAC - Fairbanks.

‘Let The Games Begin!’ Gala Opening Ceremony Celebrates Diverse Cultures

The 2014 Arctic Winter Games officially got underway Sunday, with a gala opening ceremony before a standing-room-only crowd at the Carlson Center. A full slate of competition – and a weeklong array of cultural events – begins today.

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March 17, 2014

People Say Final Farewell To Former Territorial Governor Stepovich

People from across Alaska and the Lower 48 assembled in Fairbanks today to bid final farewell to former Territorial Governor Mike Stepovich.

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February 28, 2014

Tok Residents Trying to Revive Biomass-Fueled Power Plant Project To Cut Energy Costs

Business and community leaders in Tok are trying to revive a plan to cut the area’s high energy costs by generating electricity with biomass.

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February 18, 2014

Tourists Rescued Near Chatanika

Alaska State Troopers rescued a group of tourists late Friday night after they got stuck in their vehicle trying to get to a lodge about 20 miles north of Fairbanks near Chatanika on an outing to view the aurora borealis.

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February 10, 2014

North Pole Crude Refinery Shutting Down

Officials with Flint Hills Resources Alaska announced today they will halt processing crude oil at the company’s North Pole refinery over the next few months.

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February 4, 2014
The Gerstle River Test Site is located about 35 miles southeast of Delta Junction, east of the Alaska Highway. It's adjacent to a 65,000-acre test site expansion area, which the Army has given back to the State of Alaska. Image from the U.S. Army.

Army Seeks ‘Data Gaps’ Over Cleanups At Old Chem/Bio-warfare Site Near Greely

Environmental officials are reviewing cleanup work conducted at a former military test site south of Delta Junction. The Gerstle River site was used by the Army to test chemical and biological agents during the height of the Cold War.

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February 3, 2014
The Army has 657,000 acres of training ranges around Fort Greely, next door to Delta Junction. Because Delta is not located within a borough, the feds gives PILT funds to the state to distribute.

PILT: Local Municipal Officials Hope Congress Will Fund Federal-Aid Program

City and borough government officials here in Alaska are a bit on edge about Congress’s failure to provide funding for the PILT program, which helps local governments with a lot of federal land in their areas. The program is especially critical to smaller communities like Delta Junction.

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January 27, 2014

Fairbanks Militia Leader Holding Anti-Gun-Control Rally

A local militia leader is organizing an anti-gun-control rally that’ll be held next month in downtown Fairbanks. The rally is one of five to be held around the state on Feb. 23 to show support for the Second Amendment and other right-wing political causes.

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January 14, 2014

Refinery Owner Seeks Lower Cleanup Level For Tainted Groundwater

The operator of the North Pole refinery wants the state to set a lower standard for cleaning up the sulfolane groundwater-contamination problem in the North Pole area. Flint Hills Resources Alaska has asked the head of the state Department of Environmental Conservation to set a less-stringent cleanup level for the industrial solvent that leaked into the groundwater for more than a decade before Flint Hills bought the refinery in 2004. The requests could delay cleanup for several months.

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January 13, 2014

Air Quality Regulations Worry Fairbanks, State Officials

The controversial air-quality regulations that state officials have proposed for Fairbanks-area residents are aimed at reducing pollution from wood-burning heating systems. They do not apply to coal-fired systems, which are increasingly popular because coal is cheaper than wood.

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January 10, 2014

Bernice Joseph Dies At Age 49

Alaska Native leader Bernice Joseph of Fairbanks died of cancer yesterday at age 49. Joseph was a professor and administrator at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, but she maintained strong ties with rural Alaska.

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January 8, 2014

Slow Business, High Costs Shut Down Paxson Lodge

The Paxson Lodge is closed. The owner of the roadhouse at the junction of the Richardson and Denali highways says he shut the lodge down due to slow business and high operating costs. It’s the latest of several Richardson Highway roadhouses that have closed down in recent years.

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December 30, 2013

Tanana Chiefs Conference Gets Lead Role In Tribal Foster Care

Tanana Chiefs Conference President Jerry Isaac and the head of the Health and Social Services Commissioner signed an agreement yesterday that will give TCC the lead role in managing foster care for tribal children.

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December 19, 2013