Alaska News Nightly: May 12, 2010

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Federal Review Opens ANWR Debate
Steve Heimel, APRN – Anchorage
A large crowd turned out yesterday to give the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service their thoughts about how to manage the Arctic National Wildife Refuge. But most of them wanted to talk about something the government says it is not going to consider or respond to – wilderness protection for the coastal plain.

Anchorage Lawyer Has Advice for Gulf Fishermen
Ellen Lockyer, KSKA – Anchorage
BP is accepting damages claims as a result of the massive Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Attorneys are weighing options on litigation strategies for fishing industry interests affected by the disaster, but one Anchorage lawyer, who is no stranger to oil- fueled legal challenges, says federal legislation since the Exxon Valdez spill could significantly change litigation procedures.

Governor Signs Cook Inlet Gas Bill
Dave Donaldson, APRN – Juneau
Governor Parnell today signed a bill designed to encourage Cook Inlet producers to pump gas year-round into underground storage facilities.

TransCanada CEO Outlines Financial Hurdles for Gas Line
Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks
A Trans Canada official says its North Slope natural gas pipeline project faces major financial hurdles. In a presentation to the Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce yesterday (Tuesday) Trans Canada Vice President of Alaska development Tony Palmer described what he calls significant challenges to move the project it’s pursuing with partner Exxon Mobil forward.

Police Officers Hold Memorial Observance
Casey Kelly, KTOO – Juneau
Governor Sean Parnell was keynote speaker at JPD’s annual Peace Officers Memorial observance yesterday (Tuesday) on the lawn of the Alaska State Museum.

UAF Researcher Studying Potent Greenhouse Gas
Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks
Thawing permafrost is increasing methane emissions across the north, but the potent greenhouse gas may be a viable energy source. That was the message of University of Alaska Fairbanks researcher Katey Walter Anthony in a recent presentation on methane emissions.

Wildlife Managers Collar Problem Bear in Sitka
Robert Woolsey, KCAW – Sitka
The Alaska Department of Fish & Game captured and collared a problem brown bear in Sitka over the weekend. Biologists can now use radio signals to track the animal and her two cubs, and possibly prevent problems before they start.

Small Cruise Ship Company Makes Prince of Wales Island a Destination
Deanna Garrison, KRBD – Ketchikan
A small cruise ship will be making two test visits to Prince of Wales Island this summer. While a handful of small cruise lines have visited the island over the past number of years, large cruise ships have bypassed Prince of Wales in favor of nearby ports like Ketchikan.