Zachariah Hughes, KNOM - Nome
A report released today by the World Wildlife Fund in Canada finds the capacity for oil spill response in the Beaufort Sea is woefully inadequate, even as Canadian regulators consider relaxing safety standards for offshore exploration.
With chum salmon surging through much of Western Alaska, commercial openings are having dramatically different effects from a price spike in Kotzebue, to frustration towards managers in the upper Yukon.
Even as marine traffic increases past the Bering Strait, no one knows how well an oil spill could be cleaned up in the case of an accident. Stakeholders traveled to the region last week to conduct the region’s first spill response exercise, and learn more about the challenges posed.
For the second year in a row, the number of walrus harvested for subsistence on St. Lawrence Island is far below normal.
The Rasmuson Foundation awarded more than $30 million in grants in 2013. But in the last few years only about one percent of that money has gone for projects in the Bering Straits Region. Foundation members traveled to small communities in the region last week to see what kinds of programs residents would like to see funded.
Transportation to one of Alaska’s most remote communities has stopped, because of a contract delay that’s tying up funds.
A unique smell has been wafting through parts of Nome this past week, but it’s not your typical summer fragrance. It’s the smell of bear urine, and it’s part of a new plan being tested to keep musk oxen herds out of town. Tony Gorn is a biologist with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game in Nome.
As severe restrictions on Chinooks continue to hit subsistence users, early signs of strong chum runs are leading the Alaska Department of Fish and Game to announce some unanticipated commercial openings.
How will small Native communities in rural Alaska balance traditional life with the pressures of modernization? That was the question community leaders focused on during the second day of discussions on the proposed road to the Ambler Mining District.
Starting Wednesday, the Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority—or AIDEA—is holding two days of meetings in Kotzebue about a proposed 200-mile road through the interior to the Ambler Mining District.
If you live by the Norton Sound, get ready for salmon. On Monday, the Department of Fish and Game announced subsistence and commercial openings that will begin this Wednesday, June 18th, for three subdistricts in the Norton Sound.
Subsistence users in Nome are criticizing gold miners and regulators for failing to take into account the negative impacts mining is having on other resources in the area. Officials from different agencies took public comment on the issue at a community meeting yesterday.
This morning an advisory panel of the North Pacific Fisheries Management Council heard public testimony on proposed policy changes to salmon bycatch. The panel makes recommendations to the governing board of the council, which is meeting this week in Nome.
Yesterday evening residents from Kobuk, Shugnak and Ambler gathered in the Kobuk community school for meetings about the status of a state-backed industrial road that would pass through the region.
Norwegian police and Special Forces cleared Green Peace protestors off an oil rig in the Barents Sea this week. Activists have since been using a boat to block access to the proposed drill site, which could become the world’s Northern-most offshore oil well. The action is part of increasing efforts by environmental groups.
Congressman Don Young is introducing a bill in Washington, D.C. to speed up development in an area of the Seward Peninsula that many are eyeing as one piece of a future Arctic Port.
With the return of marine mammals and migratory birds to the Bering Straits region, subsistence hunters are still struggling to find certain kinds of ammunition.