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.

The community of Ambler along the Kobuk river as seen from the air

Trump Administration approves road through Gates of the Arctic National Preserve

Aerial view of Ambler and the Kobuk River in the summer. (Courtesy of the National Park Service via UAF Gates of...

Pebble Mine to clear environmental review this week, but is it ‘practicable’?

The Pebble Mine becomes a step closer to reality this week but legal questions remain.
A gray whale carcass was found near Wrangell Island. (Photo courtesy and of Ceona Koch)

Another gray whale found dead in Cook Inlet, scientists still aren’t sure what’s causing the die-off

A gray whale stranded in Twentymile River near Girdwood over Memorial Day weekend was reported dead in Cook Inlet earlier this month. The young male whale was first spotted by boaters a mile upstream from the Seward Highway bridge on May 25.

State gives Italian oil giant six more months to make $2.7M rent payment on Alaska leases

It’s the third such extension granted by DNR in the past three months. The department cited the coronavirus pandemic’s dire impacts as the reason to give companies more time to pay.
An aerial view of a mining camp, which looks like a clearing in the trees

NovaGold sues research firm for report on Donlin Gold mine

After the short-selling firm J Capital Research released a report suggesting the Donlin Gold mine was too expensive to build, NovaGold's stock price dropped, but since then its prices have rebounded.

Hilcorp quietly takes over BP’s stakes in Prudhoe Bay and other Alaska oil fields

Hilcorp Alaska announced in a written statement Wednesday morning that it has taken over BP’s interests in the Prudhoe Bay, Milne Point and Point Thompson fields.

DNR to complete its review of BP sale this week

DNR Commissioner Corri Feige says that will allow the companies to close a piece of their deal by June 30th.

Petition calls for Calista shareholder vote on Donlin mine

A group of shareholders wants a vote on whether or not the controversial gold mine should be built.

One short-selling financial firm says the Donlin Gold mine is too expensive to build

The firm acknowledges that it would benefit from the a decline in Donlin's stock, but others agree that the cost of building the mine is the biggest obstacle to its profitability.

Developers of proposed Pebble Mine offer dividends to everyone in Bristol Bay, hotbed of mine opposition

Register now, the company says, and payments will begin with construction. "Shameless" says one leading opponent.

ConocoPhillips to resume normal production in July in Alaska

ConocoPhillips plans to resume normal production operations on Alaska’s North Slope in July, a spokesperson said, after a reduction this month that the company attributed to low prices and a global oversupply of oil.

Alaska superior court judge orders state to correct its summary of the oil-tax initiative

Superior Court Judge William Morse sided with proponents of the ballot initiative, saying Meyer did not provide an impartial summary.

Western Alaska just had the toastiest May on record

This year, Western Alaska had its warmest May on record. It was the fourth warmest May for the state as a whole. Certain conditions aren’t as blistering as last year, but maintain the recent trend of a warming Arctic.
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.

BP Alaska is donating the code for a new online program to track workers’ health

The oil and gas company says it wanted to create a new way to keep tabs on employees’ temperatures and any symptoms that could be consistent with the coronavirus, so it partnered with Resource Data to create a digital hub.

What’s the air quality like in Southeast Alaska without cruise ships? Scientists hope to find out this summer

Scientists don't have any baseline data to determine the effects cruise ships have on air quality. With the cancellation of cruise ships in Southeast Alaska this year, scientists will finally be able to get that information.
pipeline

Alyeska ends its cut to North Slope oil production as demand improves

Storage concerns had driven the company to cut oil flow down the trans-Alaska pipeline by as much as 15% earlier this month.

State agency opens review of Donlin Gold’s pipeline right-of-way

Despite an appeal by mine opponents, the state says it will move ahead with a review.

Environmental watchdogs are raising alarms over Pebble and other projects. But is anyone listening?

A Pebble Mine foe found a video she thought would make headlines. It didn't.

Trans-Alaska pipeline operator increases oil flow, demand creeps back

Demand for oil is starting to creep back as the economy reopens, and oil producers globally have made major cutbacks to production.