Ravenna Koenig, Alaska's Energy Desk - Fairbanks

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As Trump administration contemplates drilling in Arctic waters, North Slope organizations stress need to protect subsistence resources

In public comments made available on a federal site, most North Slope institutions didn’t express outright opposition to the plan. But they did voice concern for subsistence resources and hunters’ continued access to them.

Cash-strapped state of Alaska takes aim at North Slope government’s oil money

A proposal by Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy would strip the North Slope Borough of its power to collect nearly $400 million in property taxes from oil companies each year. The idea gets at a longstanding question: How much money from oil should stay in the North Slope, where it’s pumped from the ground?

Prospect of commercial fishing in central Arctic Ocean poses big questions for science

The first legally-binding, multilateral agreement to prevent commercial fishing in the central Arctic Ocean was signed last year. A key part of that agreement is collaboration on scientific research, which could underpin a management plan later.

AK: Taking a ride with the last dog team left in Utqiaġvik

In Utqiaġvik, there’s still one dog team left, and their musher has been getting around the tundra by dogsled for more than 30 years.

ASRC, after backing Dunleavy’s campaign, blasts his oil tax redistribution plan

ASRC president and CEO Rex Rock Sr. said: “Trying to balance a state budget on the backs of the Iñupiat people across the Arctic Slope is a wrongsided attack on our region.”

With winter snow trails, North Slope Borough hopes to offer residents a safe path over tundra

“Near-deaths and freezing, running out of gas are some of the issues surrounding being able to go between communities,” said Gordon Brower, director of the North Slope Borough’s Planning and Community Services Department.

U.S. Air Force ‘barren lands’ survival course teaches how to stay alive in Arctic wilderness

Survival course trainees are exposed to subzero temperatures and winds that gust up to 30-plus miles an hour. “They don’t go back inside after they come out here and begin the training,” said instructor Sgt. Garrett Wright.

With spring whaling around the corner, sinew thread makers are hard at work

“Everything just falls into place,” says Nancy Leavitt of the hard work involved in sinew thread making. “The problems, the stress, the thoughts you have. Most of them just disappear.”

Interior Dept. kicks off new round of meetings on drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

Some people at the meeting expressed concern about the process. Lisa Baraff with the Northern Alaska Environmental Center said that the timeline BLM has been using for their environmental review is too short.

‘Life is going to spring back to us’: the sun returns to Utqiaġvik

“Life is going to spring back to us,” said Robin Mongoyak. “Spring is coming, summer is around the corner. Birds when they come in big flocks, it’s like thousands of people coming to greet us.”

After struggling for years to clean up its air, Fairbanks still faces contentious wood smoke problem

For years, Fairbanks and neighboring city North Pole have had some of the worst air quality in the United States. The area has been failing to meet a federal air quality standard since 2009 — now it's reached the deadline.

State of Alaska issues two key permits for Donlin mine

Along with the reclamation plan approval, the state also increased the amount of money Donlin Gold will be required to put down ahead of time for the mine’s cleanup.

Polar bear encounter reported in Arctic Village, many miles south of normal range

Polar bear researcher Eric Regehr says that in individual cases like this, it’s very difficult to attribute cause to why a bear wandered so far from its typical area.

Fairbanks’ famously severe cold snaps are getting less cold and more rare

Over the last 80-some years, there’s been a noticeable change in Fairbanks: The more recent cold snaps haven’t been as cold, and they’re occurring less frequently than they used to.

Japan whaling decision may have consequences for Alaska subsistence whalers

Last month Japan announced that it is leaving the international group that regulates whaling and will resume commercial whaling in its own coastal waters.

Adding insulation to the outside of your home? Watch out for mold.

At the Cold Climate Housing Research Center in Fairbanks, there’s an experiment underway to try to find a cheaper way to make that kind of retrofit while still keeping risk of mold low.

Arctic Report Card: 2018 was the Arctic’s second-warmest year on record

The document looks at seven big categories — the Arctic’s so-called “vital signs.” Those include things like snow cover, the condition of the Greenland ice sheet, and sea ice conditions.

Reactions from Utqiaġvik on a whaling quota rule change: ‘We don’t have to beg anymore’

This year, the Alaska Eskimo Whaling Commission and the U.S. government put forward a new proposal that would change how the International Whaling Commission renews its quota. It passed.

Science and traditional knowledge converge in North Slope Borough’s bowhead whale program

Scientists have spent the past few decades catching up to traditional knowledge, documenting scientifically what whale hunters already knew. Like the fact that the whales can smell, and that they can travel under sea ice.

New study says Chukchi polar bears are healthy despite sea ice loss — for now

“Unless the underlying problem of climate change is addressed, the sea ice is expected to continue to diminish,” said polar bear researcher Eric Regehr. “And at some point that will likely have a negative effect on the bears in this Chukchi area.”