Talk of Alaska

Tuesdays at 10 a.m. (LIVE) repeating at 8 p.m. Alaska’s only statewide call-in forum for discussing the issues impacting life on the Last Frontier. Politics, science, culture and current events are covered by hosts from the Alaska Public Media news team along with guests and callers. Call 550-8422 (Anchorage) or 1-800-478-8255 (statewide) during the live broadcast.

LISTEN: How emergency officials and first responders are preparing for coronavirus

President Donald Trump declared a national emergency over the coronavirus pandemic. What does that mean for state emergency planners?

LISTEN: Experts answer Alaskans’ questions about coronavirus

Coronavirus is spreading rapidly across the globe. While Alaska has not yet had any confirmed cases, the United States has, and health and emergency preparedness officials are getting ready to combat the virus locally.

LISTEN: Legends of the last great race are here to celebrate Iditarod 2020

What can we expect from this year's field of racers? How have trail conditions and sled designs changed over the decades? And who's trail stories are the most…hellacious? It's all about the Iditarod when race icons Jeff King and DeeDee Jonrowe join us.

LISTEN: It’ll take more than money to bring the Alaska Marine Highway back to life

The ferry system is completely offline right now, with residents facing empty shelves and upended plans. Temporary contractors may help in the short term, but what will it cost Alaskans and what's the long term solution?

LISTEN: Gov. Mike Dunleavy returns to discuss resolving the state budget stalemate

Gov. Mike Dunleavy released his budget plan in December with a full permanent fund dividend and a $1.5 billion deficit for legislators to grapple with.
A picture of a large cardboard box and a pile vape pens in ziplock bags on a table.

LISTEN: To combat teen vaping in Alaska schools, educators and state officials work together

Teen vaping is a growing problem nationwide, with the CDC reporting that one in four students use vaping products. But what’s inside the liquid being vaporized? And how will it affect teenager’s health?

LISTEN: How serious is the novel coronavirus?

There are confirmed cases in the U.S. and a chartered flight evacuated Americans from China through the Anchorage airport before arriving in California. But how big should this concern be compared to annual influenza infections? Should countries shut down international travel?

LISTEN: How can we get more Alaskans teaching in their home communities?

The highest rates of teacher turnover in Alaska are with teachers who are trained outside the state. So how are educators and lawmakers working to get more Alaskans trained to teach in their home communities?

LISTEN: Homelessness services are working to keep Alaskans sheltered as statewide cold snap continues

The recent, severe cold weather has turned difficult conditions into life threatening ones. How are shelter managers and others who work to end homelessness grappling with extreme need for those who are most vulnerable during this extended cold snap?

LISTEN: There’s a lot on the table during the next legislative session. State government reporters break down what to look out for.

Next Tuesday, legislators return to Juneau to start the 2020 session. Will the Dunleavy administration and state lawmakers find common ground on how to pay for state services and a permanent fund dividend without draining the Constitutional Budget Reserve?

LISTEN: Senate leadership is here to answer your questions ahead of the 2020 legislative session

Alaska Lawmakers will have a lot on their plates when they convene on January 21st for the start of the legislative session. How will they work to balance spending with less revenue coming in from oil and what amount will they agree to for a permanent fund dividend?

LISTEN: There’s $3.2B dollars at stake in the 2020 Census

The U.S Census happens just once a decade and it kicks off in Tooksok Bay, Alaska in mid-January. Getting an accurate count of all Alaskans is critically important for billions of dollars in federal funding and drawing political jurisdiction lines.

LISTEN: Hear and share holiday greetings all across the state in our annual two-hour holiday special

Alaska is a big state, but people are very connected here. If you want to find out how connected Alaskans are, just listen to the radio for a while on Tuesday morning.

LISTEN: Alaska’s heath care workforce shortage threatens the growing industry. How are communities working to meet the demand?

Alaska's health care industry is growing, and the need for nurses and other health care professionals is on the rise. Studies warn of a looming nursing shortage. How are communities around the state working to meet the healthcare workforce demand?

LISTEN: Spanish flu devastated rural Alaska in 1918. Are we better prepared for a pandemic 100 years later?

The 1918 viral pandemic known as the Spanish flu, killed millions worldwide and devastated rural communities in Alaska. 100 years later, what did pathologists learn from that outbreak and how prepared are we to handle a fast moving infectious disease today?

LISTEN: The Nov. 30 earthquake, one year later: what did we learn?

It's been a year since the largest earthquake to shake Alaska since 1964 hit the Southcentral region. Even with millions of dollars in destruction happening in seconds, no one was killed. Was it building codes, epicenter location or just luck?

LISTEN: What should the future of Alaska’s government look like? AFN has a few ideas.

The Alaska Federation of Natives annual convention theme last month was Good Government-Alaskan Driven. How does AFN leadership see their role in driving political change and how do they work with tribal leaders to accomplish it?

LISTEN: Southeast’s “extreme drought” is over, but there are still concerns about water conservation

Southeast communities are working to adapt to a problem they never imagined-- drought. This week on Talkf of Alaska we discuss community health, water conservation in a rainforest and the climate model forecasts for the future.

LISTEN: As the Arctic climate warms, the growing season lengthens. Will rural Alaska become more agricultural?

As winter approaches, farmers and gardeners make plans for spring crops. Climate change effects on the growing season in Alaska means new opportunities and challenges for the future. Will residents, even in the arctic, be able to grow enough food for their winter use?

LISTEN: 32 rural Alaska communities still lack running water. Infrastructure builders are trying to change that.

For most Americans, in home running water and flushing toilets are considered basic utilities, but across rural Alaska more than 30 villages are still living without piped systems. What are the challenges of providing water infrastructure to these communities?