Alaska News Nightly: July 23, 2014

Individual news stories are posted on the APRN news page. You can subscribe to APRN’s newsfeeds via emailpodcast and RSS. Follow us on Facebook at and on Twitter @aprn

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Kuskokwim Fishers: Stop Commercial Openings, Call in Feds

Daysha Eaton, KYUK-Bethel

The Kuskokwim River Salmon Management Working Group wants the state to end to all commercial openings for the remainder of the summer.  The say despite unmet subsistence needs the state has allowed commercial salmon openings. Some upriver fishermen are fed up with the state, and want the Federal Subsistence Board to manage the river from here on out.

Community Protests Enstar Rate Volatility

Anne Hillman, KSKA-Anchorage

Community members packed the hearing room of the Regulatory Commission of Alaska Wednesday morning in Anchorage. They pushed for consistent gas pricing from Enstar in response to a recent big jump in rates.

Judge Rules In Favor of Commercial Set Netting Ban

Alexander Gutierrez, APRN-Juneau

A superior court judge has ruled in favor of an initiative to ban commercial set netting for salmon in urban areas. Earlier this year, Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell blocked the initiative sponsors from collecting signatures to appear on the ballot, based on a recommendation from the Department of Law that the measure would qualify as an unconstitutional appropriation. The state also argued that such an initiative would count as an allocation to sport fishermen and that it would erode the power of the Board of Fisheries.

State Releases New Guidelines for Mercury and Fish

Joaquin Palomino, KSKA-Anchorage

The state Epidemiology office has released a new mercury contamination risk determination for Alaska fish. The new guideline basically increases the number of Alaskan fish that they say can be eaten safely and without restriction. Ali Hamade, Environmental Public Health Manager for the state, says Alaska fish has a lot going for it.

Arctic Birds Show More Signs of Mercury

Thea Card, KDLG-Dillingham

A new study from the journal Waterbirds shows there’s an increasing amount of mercury occurring in birds in Alaska’s Arctic coast.

Canadian Environmental Officials Give OK to Mine NE of Ketchikan

Ed Schoenfeld, CoastAlaska-Juneau

Canadian environmental officials just gave provisional approval to a controversial mine planned for an area northeast of Ketchikan. Their counterparts in British Columbia have done the same.

New App Out for Cup’ik Language

Charles Enoch, KYUK-Bethel

The Cup’ik language is about to get its biggest audience yet. A new app has been developed to help Cup’ik students learn their language and show it off to the world.

Dee Daniels Teaching Jazz to Fine Arts Campers

Robert Woolsey, KCAW-Sitka

The Dee Daniels Vocal Jazz Workshop is underway this week in Sitka.  For the last two years, Daniels has interrupted her touring and teaching schedule to live at the Sitka Fine Arts Camp, and coach a half-dozen students of widely-ranging ages and ability.