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.

Papua New Guinea company to take over big North Slope oil play

Denver-based Armstrong Energy is selling off a significant chunk of its stake in the Nanushuk oil play to Oil Search, a company based in Papua New Guinea. Oil Search announced Wednesday that it will take over as operator next June. Listen now

Hilcorp CEO steps down

Hildebrand is known for being among the wealthiest people in the world, with a net worth of $7.6 billion, according to Bloomberg. Listen now

In AOGA gubernatorial debate, Dunleavy and Hawkins grill Walker on China, gasline prospects

Gov. Bill Walker, former State Senator Mike Dunleavy and businessman Scott Hawkins faced off in a debate yesterday at the Alaska Oil and Gas Association’s annual conference in Anchorage. Listen now

Hundreds of dying seabirds found in Bering and Chukchi seas

Since May, hundreds of dead and dying seabirds have been found across the northern Bering and southern Chukchi Seas. Listen now

ConocoPhillips to begin work on $1 billion North Slope oil development this winter

ConocoPhillips today announced the company has made the final decision to build a new, roughly $1 billion drill site on the North Slope. Listen now

State agency orders review following accident at Prudhoe Bay well

A state agency is holding a public hearing and requesting a field-wide review of all of BP's oil wells at Prudhoe Bay following an accident last month.

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.

New York Times reporter discusses story revealing ANWR oil test well was ‘worthless’

This week, the New York Times published a story uncovering a long-held Alaska secret: it revealed that the only exploratory oil well ever drilled in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge was "worthess." Alaska's Energy Desk reporter Elizabeth Harball talked to Henry Fountain, one of the New York Times reporters who broke the story.

Climate change looks different in Southeast Alaska. Here’s how tribes are planning for that.

The Central Council of the Tlingit & Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska has a climate change adaptation plan. It wants the region to be included in the climate change discussion.

With ANWR drilling on its doorstep, an Alaska Native village is poised to profit

It’s still too early to know if petroleum even exists in the refuge in commercially-viable quantities. But if it’s found, Kaktovik’s residents are simultaneously positioned to be among the biggest beneficiaries, and to experience some of the biggest disruptions.

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.

Sea ice begins to recede as Northwest Alaska cold snap dies down

The cold snap helped the sea ice form in the Chukchi and Bering Seas, but the recent shift is slowing it down.

Under proposed Trump changes to Migratory Bird Act, Exxon wouldn’t have been fined for Valdez spill, advocacy groups say

For more than 100 years, the Migratory Bird Treaty Act has protected such populations. Now, the Trump administration is proposing to reduce the law’s reach in an effort to remove red tape for developers.
three white quonset huts sit on a dirt road

Donlin Gold slowly restarts drilling program

Donlin Gold has announced plans to restart its drilling program as the state loosens coronavirus health mandates and travel restrictions.
A pile of sawdust in a muddy parking lot

In a quest for cheaper energy, Kake turns to biomass heating

After looking through available renewable energy sources like solar and wind, the village of Kake turned to a resource that is readily available on the Southeast panhandle: wood.

Alaska holding out against emission-cutting policies

The Arctic is on the front lines of climate change. Alaska is warming at twice the rate of the rest of the planet. A group called Alaska Common Ground hosted an all-day forum in Anchorage over the weekend to answer the question, "What are we doing about it?" Download Audio

State agency could offer public comment period on fracking projects

The Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (AOGCC) is proposing a ten-day comment period for applications to use hydraulic fracturing on an oil or gas well. The proposal falls in between what environmental groups and the industry say is sufficient opportunity for public input before a well can be fracked in Alaska. Listen now

Eruptions can’t stop sealife from calling Bogoslof home

Before Bogoslof volcano started erupting, it was a haven for endangered Steller sea lions, fur seals and sea birds. But scientists did not know when and if animals would return to the eastern Aleutian Island. Listen now

Is Alaska’s climate risk, a credit risk?

State investment officer says the areas most affected by climate change don't affect the state's ability to pay its bills. Listen now

Why a Papua New Guinea company is taking over one of Alaska’s biggest oil fields

An oil project in the Arctic may seem like an odd leap for a company from an island nation in the South Pacific. But in a recent interview, the newly-minted president of Oil Search Alaska, Keiran Wulff, said the company is serious about its new venture. Listen now