Alaska's Energy Desk

Alaska’s Energy Desk is a collaboration between KTOO-FM in Juneau, Alaska Public Media in Anchorage, KUCB in Unalaska, Fairbanks Daily News-Miner in Fairbanks, KBRW in Utqiaġvik and KYUK in Bethel. Each week we produce in-depth coverage of energy issues in Alaska for radio, video and web. From the state budget to personal energy use, resource development to Arctic life, we cover how energy issues impact Alaskan lives and landscapes. Alaska’s Energy Desk is a Regional Journalism Collaboration, launched in 2016 with a supporting grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

Pebble’s owner reports growing deficit and doubts about its future. Again.

A spokesman says Pebble remains confident. The parent company says it's lost $40 million so far this year, and has a deficit over $400 million.

Unalaska is researching whether it can use wind power

V3 Energy consultant Doug Vaught anchors a MET tower on Unalaska's Hog Island, with help from environmental planner Kate Arduser. The...

Heavy rains prompt flooding concerns for Ketchikan less than a month after drought ends

A month of near-constant downpours has finally lifted the Ketchikan area out of drought — but getting all that rain at once presents an entirely new set of problems.

Battered by a marine heatwave, Kodiak’s cod fishermen may not be fishing in the Gulf for much longer

They’re now below the federal threshold that protects cod as a food source for endangered Stellar sea lions. As soon as the population dips below that line, the fishery closes. The whole federal cod fishery in the Gulf could be shut down for the season in January.

A Skagway brewery is harnessing beer gas to grow aeroponic produce for its restaurant

Skagway Brewing Company harnesses the carbon dioxide produced by brewing to fuel the plants. Growing the local produce is both supplying the brewery's restaurant and adding a layer of food security to the remote southeast community.
The ConocoPhillips building in downtown Anchorage.

For sale: A stake in an array of ConocoPhillips’ Alaska projects

On the block are old, new and unbuilt projects: the Kuparuk River Unit, which is Alaska’s second-largest oil-field; the newer Alpine unit to the west; and the undeveloped Willow prospect in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska.

Why was fire prevention funding used on the Roadless Rule process in Alaska? Congress members want to know.

A United States senator from Michigan and a representative from Arizona want an investigation into why federal dollars typically used to prevent wildfires were given to the State of Alaska to work on the Roadless Rule.

Elected officials, economic groups push to deploy Tazlina amid ferry service reductions

Several communities in Southeast Alaska lost ferry service this winter when the Alaska Marine Highway System docked the M/V Leconte for expensive repairs. Now some in the region are pushing the state to deploy the M/V Tazlina to make up for the reduced sailings.

BLM responds to tribes’ criticism over planning process for draft resource management plan

The Orutsararmiut Native Council is calling the federal planning process for how 13 million acres of public land is managed in the region “woefully inadequate.” BLM says that they are taking more steps to reach out.
Wrangell’s mayor. Steve Prysunka. circulated this image on social media. It shows the lack of water running into Wrangell’s reservoirs. (Photo Courtesy of City of Wrangell)

Rains erase last of ‘severe drought’ in Southeast as conditions improve statewide

Places like Ketchikan, Wrangell and as far north as Juneau are still in “moderate drought.”

In Tlingit land-rights loss, a Native American rights attorney lays out injustice and hope for the future

In a lecture at the Sealaska Heritage Institute, Walter Echo-Hawk laid out the factors leading to the Supreme Court’s 1955 Tee-Hit-Ton Tlingit land rights decision.

Increase in observer fees has people in the fishing industry questioning how their dollars are being spent

Observer fees are going up for Alaska fishermen and processors. In Kodiak, fishermen aren’t too worried about the modest increase, but some would like to see improvements made to the decades-old program.

Forest Service kicks off Roadless Rule discussion in Juneau

People who attended the meeting had a lot of questions about the process.

A new inventory of old growth trees could be coming. Will it be too late?

A proposed exemption from the federal Roadless Rule means prohibitions on logging could be removed for millions of acres of old growth trees in the region.

Lawyers spar over whether young Alaskans’ climate lawsuit can move forward

The case, Sinnok v. State of Alaska, is being brought by 16 young Alaskans arguing that current policy violates their right to "a stable climate system" under the state constitution.

There’s a new fight over Bering Sea black cod. Warming water may be to blame.

Small-boat fishermen who catch black cod are sounding alarms about increasing numbers of black cod that are being caught accidentally, as bycatch, by larger Seattle-based trawlers that fish in the Bering Sea.

Pebble opponents sue Trump administration over EPA reversal

They are challenging EPA’s decision this summer to throw out what some saw as a “preemptive veto” of the proposed copper and gold mine, claiming the agency did not properly justify the decision.

As BP exits Alaska, 1,600 employees are waiting to find out what’s next

BP has operated in Alaska for over half a century and has long had a hand in running the state’s biggest oilfield, Prudhoe Bay. The oil company’s plans to exit the state has left hundreds of workers like McFarland in limbo.

About 300 BP union employees will keep their jobs — for now

According to Hilcorp, about 300 BP union workers at Prudhoe Bay will remain in their jobs, at least through the end of their current contract.

8 key takeaways for Alaska in a major new United Nations report on climate change

The United Nations on Wednesday released a major new report on how climate change is affecting the world’s oceans and frozen areas, like glaciers, ice sheets and permafrost. It contains stark warnings on how rising emissions will affect the environments that blanket most of the earth's surface -- and much of Alaska.