Elizabeth Jenkins, Alaska's Energy Desk - Juneau


Alaska lawmakers learn about a subsistence superfood

The state’s food safety codes currently don’t allow seal oil in public facilities like nursing homes. But a movement is underway to serve the beloved food to Elders.

The Alaska Roadless Rule decision is moving along. Some tribal governments say it’s moving too fast.

The Organized Village of Kake says the timeline has felt rushed for a decision that could have a major impact on rural Southeast Alaska.

In Anchorage, emotionally preparing students for the scary prospect of climate change

“One of the reasons why I suspect other teachers might not want to jump into this, besides it being a political hot topic, is it’s heavy and it’s a real downer,” says science educator Bryan Smith.

In Sitka, a teacher wants her classroom to know who’s responsible for climate change

Some school districts don’t elaborate on the causes of climate change, while others make it clear: Humans are largely to blame. This week, we’re going inside two Alaska classrooms to learn how teachers and students are navigating these difficult conversations.
Tall sitka spruce trees seen from withing the foreset

Of 140,000 comments, most favor keeping the Tongass Forest Roadless Rule

Back in August, the U.S. Forest Service said it would consider the state’s ask for an exemption that would make it easier to build new roads through the federal land.

Alaska’s latest climate policy is still offline. So these students made a delivery to the governor.

Shortly after Gov. Michael Dunleavy was sworn into office, the website with the state’s latest plan to address climate change went down. It was created with months of planning by a team appointed by former Gov. Bill Walker.
Tall sitka spruce trees seen from withing the foreset

Forest Service reschedules meeting on Southeast Alaska timber sales

The agency worked on the project during the partial government shutdown, which drew sharp criticism from environmental groups.

Crafting a story of romance and resiliency with Tongass bowls

While Tongass National Forest timber sales have declined for decades, new initiatives could open up more logging. But one Sitka craftsman doesn’t want that to happen. He’s content using dead old growth, and he makes his living creating bowls from the Tongass without cutting down living trees.

Despite the shutdown, it’s been a dizzying week for a Southeast Alaska timber sale

On Tuesday, the U.S. Forest Service notified objectors of a proposed timber sale about a public meeting in Klawock. By Thursday, the meeting was canceled. But some groups are wondering why this work is happening now at all.

Amid environmental grief, finding hope in a graveyard of yellow cedar

One ecologist wonders, for the yellow cedar forests and the people who care about them, what comes after climate change and environmental loss in Southeast Alaska?

Alaska Made: There’s only one Christmas tree farm in Alaska. It’s on Kodiak, and it’s thriving.

Many of the favorite commercial decorative species don’t grow naturally this far north. So a family of Kodiak farmers decided to take on the challenge.

Where’d the website for Walker’s climate change team go?

The Alaska Office of Information Technology is going through the process of updating the state website, which means websites you could access last week may not be available now.

Is there something for everyone in a new vision for Tongass roads?

A citizen advisory committee has released a set of new recommendations that could shape the future of the Tongass National Forest.

Things are heating up for Alaska pollock — and it’s putting them in the mood to spawn

Over the past three decades, pollock spawning times in the Gulf of Alaska have varied as much as three weeks, which is potentially deadly for baby fish. Now, new research confirms warmer ocean temperatures are playing a role.

As the climate changes, Alaska’s DOT works to keep up

“I can recall a time where we would have maybe one good freezing rain event a winter,” said Tom Grman. “And then several winters ago, those were really prevalent.”

Gustavus households offered safe drinking water after latest PFAS scare

It’s a growing national issue: A foam used to suppress oil fires can leach into the environment and contaminate groundwater. Listen now

Will Alaska’s new governor keep Walker’s climate team?

Now, the real work to address climate change can start. But it’s hard to know what that might look like under new leadership. Listen now

Alaska has a climate change policy. Now what?

The state of Alaska recognizes that climate change is happening. And rather than wait around for outside help, the 37 page document outlines the prospect of local solutions to mitigate the damage. Listen now

Chinese tariffs hit Southeast Alaska’s struggling timber industry

Tariffs will be placed on trees shipped to China: a response to President Donald Trump’s latest wave of tariffs on Chinese goods. Listen now

Calls of bear sightings are up around Juneau. But why?

This season, it seems like more bears have been spotted around Juneau scavenging for food, and scientists think they know why. Listen now