Alaska News Nightly: Wednesday, Sep. 20, 2017

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Interior official says Trump administration has the ‘guts’ to allow oil exploration in ANWR

Elizabeth Harball, Alaska’s Energy Desk – Anchorage

A top Interior Department official said kick-starting oil development in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, or ANWR, is a priority for the Trump administration.

‘Vote no’: Left takes to TV and sky to reach Murkowski

Liz Ruskin, Alaska Public Media – Washington D.C.

Advocates are cranking up the pressure on Sen. Murkowski to vote against the latest health care repeal. A Palmer conservative urging a “yes” vote calls Murkowski “untouchable.”

Unsecured database discovered with information from about 600,000 Alaska voters

Casey Grove, Alaska Public Media – Anchorage

Security consultants say they discovered an unsecured online database with information on nearly 600,000 Alaska voters last week.

Fairbanks in a financial jam as state support declines

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

Declining state support has Fairbanks city and borough government up against a financial wall.

Amid evolving Afghan mission, Alaska soldiers ready to deploy 

Zachariah Hughes, Alaska Public Media – Anchorage

As the U.S. approaches the 16th anniversary of military operations in Afghanistan, thousands more troops are getting ready to deploy. One of the units is the airborne infantry division based at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Anchorage.

Arctic nations tour microgrids, exchange green energy knowledge

Kayla Desroches, KMXT – Kodiak

A program is leading representatives of Arctic nations to Alaska, Canada, Iceland and Greenland to look at the microgrids in remote communities.

La Niña Watch triggered, could affect Alaska winter temparatures

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

Cooling Pacific Ocean temperatures have triggered a La Nina Watch for the northern hemisphere. The Climate Prediction Center and the International Institute for Climate and Society issued the watch, which is based on below normal sea temperature readings in the eastern equatorial Pacific.

Ask a Climatologist: The fall color formula is pretty simple

Annie Feidt, Alaska’s Energy Desk – Anchorage

Weather conditions aren’t a driver of when fall colors appear, but weather events can drive the extent, duration and intensity of fall colors.

Crystal Serenity won’t return to Nome for years, if ever

Gabe Colombo, KNOM – Nome

The luxury cruise liner Crystal Serenity, which stopped in Nome last month, won’t be coming around to Alaska again for at least two years. The passengers it unloaded in New York City Saturday morning will be the last on its Northwest Passage route until at least 2020 — or possibly ever.