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Alaska and Yukon Headlines

Extractive frontiers -- The Arctic and Central Asia

Wed, 2014-04-23 18:44
Extractive frontiers -- The Arctic and Central Asia They are located on different parts of the planet, but the Arctic and Central Asia have similarities. Both are considered new and exciting territory for oil development; both are fraught with challenges for developers.   April 23, 2014

What’s in a name? The Japanese-built, Chinese-chartered icebreaker: MV Nunavik

Wed, 2014-04-23 18:30
What’s in a name? The Japanese-built, Chinese-chartered icebreaker: MV Nunavik The MV Nunavik, the new icebreaker about to be put into service in Canada, is a product of Asian investment and interest in the Arctic. April 23, 2014

Proposal: Use assault rifles in Sweden’s wild-boar hunt

Wed, 2014-04-23 18:28
Proposal: Use assault rifles in Sweden’s wild-boar hunt The population of wild board has exploded since the 1990s, and now about 200,000 of them are roaming the Nordic nation.April 23, 2014

Report Not Anticipating Near-Term Arctic Increase In Commercial Shipping

Wed, 2014-04-23 17:48

Despite reports of a boom in Arctic ship traffic, a recent report by the Government Accountability Office concludes commercial industries aren’t planning to boost shipping through the Bering Strait or elsewhere in the U.S. Arctic over the next decade.

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While some federal policymakers say now is the time to start building infrastructure to take advantage of shrinking sea ice, the GAO says deep-water ports, mapping and other infrastructure improvements will only go so far in attracting more ships.

For the container ship companies, one problem is that Arctic routes would be seasonal, while that industry needs steady year-round schedules. And the cruise industry says mainstream cruise lines aren’t drawn to the Arctic because, according to the GAO report, the 10-day journey is too long, the scenery unvarying and interesting ports too scarce.

U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski issued a statement disagreeing with the main message in the report, saying she believes Arctic maritime activity is on the rise and the U.S. needs to think long-term.

Legislature Passes Bill With Aid For State Refineries

Wed, 2014-04-23 17:48

The legislature has passed a bill containing aid for in state oil refineries.

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The package, which includes state income tax credits and other provisions, was forwarded by Governor Sean Parnell as a means to ensure Alaska retains its refining industry as cheaper Lower 48 oil makes shipping fuel into the state an option.

HB287 also includes a provision that would allow state oil lease holders, who sell crude to an Alaska refiner, to use the agreed to contract price for calculating state royalty payments, a change aimed at making selling oil to Alaska refiners more attractive. The incentives in HB287 would be in effect for five years, and could provide up to $20 million annually to an individual in-state refiner.

In an announcement about the bill’s passage, Governor Parnell says healthy in state refineries support a strong military presence in Alaska and jobs. Critics of the bill characterize it as an industry bail out.

YK Delta VPSOs Prepare For Firearms

Wed, 2014-04-23 17:48

When Governor Sean Parnell signs House Bill 199, approved earlier this month by the Alaska Senate, Village Public Safety Officers can legally carry firearms. The Yukon Kuskokwim region has the largest number of VPSO’s in the state.

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Survey Finds Mat-Su Residents Want To Maintain Rural Profile

Wed, 2014-04-23 17:48

A survey sponsored by the Nature Conservancy indicates that Matanuska-Susitna Borough residents want to maintain a rural profile a quarter of a century from now. The Institute of Social and Economic Research collected the data used in the survey. The results were released last week.

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Fairbanks Hatchery Opening Doors To Public

Wed, 2014-04-23 17:48

The Ruth Burnett Sport Fish Hatchery in Fairbanks will open its doors to the public during this weekend’s Outdoors Show. Public outreach and education are part of the $46 million state hatchery’s mission, and a visitor’s center is required by its borough land lease. The hatchery has been operating for more than 2 years but the visitor’s center hasn’t opened.

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Moviegoers Get Glimpse Of Katmai Grizzlies In Disney’s ‘Bears’

Wed, 2014-04-23 17:48

Moviegoers across the country got an up-close look at the wild Grizzly bears of Katmai National Park over the weekend. After a two-year shoot at Hallo Bay Bear Camp, Disney’s wilderness feature “Bears” opened Friday.

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Anchorage foster parent arrested for sexual abuse of child in his care

Wed, 2014-04-23 17:25
Anchorage foster parent arrested for sexual abuse of child in his care Steven L. Pyle, 48, was charged with three counts of sexual abuse of a minor Wednesday. The girl was a foster child in his care.April 23, 2014

Alaska News Nightly: April 23, 2014

Wed, 2014-04-23 17:04

Individual news stories are posted on the APRN news page. You can subscribe to APRN’s newsfeeds via emailpodcast and RSS. Follow us on Facebook at alaskapublic.org and on Twitter @aprn.

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What Needs To Be Done To Respond To An Arctic Oil Spill?

Steve Heimel, APRN – Anchorage

Today the National Research Council released a report on what needs to be done in order to respond to oil spills in Arctic waters. Environmental groups were quick to counter that so much needs to be done, it would be better to not drill at all.

Report Not Anticipating Near-Term Arctic Increase In Commercial Shipping

Liz Ruskin, APRN – Washington DC

Despite reports of a boom in Arctic ship traffic, a recent report by the Government Accountability Office concludes commercial industries aren’t planning to boost shipping through the Bering Strait or elsewhere in the U.S. Arctic over the next decade.

While some federal policymakers say now is the time to start building infrastructure to take advantage of shrinking sea ice, the GAO says deep-water ports, mapping and other infrastructure improvements will only go so far in attracting more ships.

For the container ship companies, one problem is that Arctic routes would be seasonal, while that industry needs steady year-round schedules. And the cruise industry says mainstream cruise lines aren’t drawn to the Arctic because, according to the GAO report, the 10-day journey is too long, the scenery unvarying and interesting ports too scarce.

U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski issued a statement disagreeing with the main message in the report, saying she believes Arctic maritime activity is on the rise and the U.S. needs to think long-term.

No End In Sight For Alaska Lawmakers

Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN – Juneau

It’s day 93 of the 90-day legislative session, and there’s still not an end in sight. A deal has not yet been made on Gov. Sean Parnell’s education bill. The committee tasked with brokering a compromise has not met at all today, after a series of delays.

All this has resulted in canceled plans, canceled plane tickets, and a lot of frustration in the Capitol. APRN’s Alexandra Gutierrez talked with people still working there to see how they feel about the hold-up.

Legislature Passes Bill With Aid For State Refineries

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

The legislature has passed a bill containing aid for in state oil refineries.

The package, which includes state income tax credits and other provisions, was forwarded by Governor Sean Parnell as a means to ensure Alaska retains its refining industry as cheaper Lower 48 oil makes shipping fuel into the state an option.

HB287 also includes a provision that would allow state oil lease holders, who sell crude to an Alaska refiner, to use the agreed to contract price for calculating state royalty payments, a change aimed at making selling oil to Alaska refiners more attractive. The incentives in HB287 would be in effect for five years, and could provide up to $20 million annually to an individual in-state refiner.

In an announcement about the bill’s passage, Governor Parnell says healthy in state refineries support a strong military presence in Alaska and jobs. Critics of the bill characterize it as an industry bail out.

YK Delta VPSOs Prepare For Firearms

Daysha Eaton, KYUK – Bethel

When Governor Sean Parnell signs House Bill 199, approved earlier this month by the Alaska Senate, Village Public Safety Officers can legally carry firearms. The Yukon Kuskokwim region has the largest number of VPSO’s in the state.

Survey Finds Mat-Su Residents Want To Maintain Rural Profile

Ellen Lockyer, KSKA – Anchorage

A survey sponsored by the Nature Conservancy indicates that Matanuska-Susitna Borough residents want to maintain a rural profile a quarter of a century from now. The Institute of Social and Economic Research collected the data used in the survey.  The results were released last week.

Fairbanks Hatchery Opening Doors To Public

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

The Ruth Burnett Sport Fish Hatchery in Fairbanks will open its doors to the public during this weekend’s Outdoors Show.  Public outreach and education are part of the $46 million state hatchery’s mission, and a visitor’s center is required by its borough land lease. The hatchery has been operating for more than 2 years but the visitor’s center hasn’t opened.

Moviegoers Get Glimpse Of Katmai Grizzlies In Disney’s ‘Bears’

Aaron Selbig, KBBI – Homer

Moviegoers across the country got an up-close look at the wild Grizzly bears of Katmai National Park over the weekend. After a two-year shoot at Hallo Bay Bear Camp, Disney’s wilderness feature “Bears” opened Friday.

Ukraine standoff: For some, Russia’s tactics hark back to Soviet practices

Wed, 2014-04-23 16:32
Ukraine standoff: For some, Russia’s tactics hark back to Soviet practicesRussia and intelligence experts say the Ukraine conflict – more subterfuge than overt action in its tactics – is aimed at nothing less than reestablishing Russian grandeur and power.April 23, 2014

Kotzebue man allegedly shoots 4 of his mother's dogs

Wed, 2014-04-23 15:57
Kotzebue man allegedly shoots 4 of his mother's dogs Carl Henry Jr. allegedly shot his mother's dogs earlier this month after she called him a drunk.April 23, 2014

Minimum upset price for lots set at $395,000

Wed, 2014-04-23 14:21
In deciding to sell two Ogilvie Street lots, the city has essentially taken from one to sell to another, says Sally Wright of the Escarpment Parks Society.

Inspirational teacher recognized for his approach

Wed, 2014-04-23 14:18
Whitehorse teacher Peter Harms was recognized Tuesday for providing inspiration and guidance in the field of science education.

Abuser made ‘incalculable impact’ on his victims

Wed, 2014-04-23 14:14
In an eight-year jail sentence handed down to a Yukon man convicted of sexual assault against girls in his own family, a territorial court judge has praised four women for coming forward in the wake of trauma.

Div. 1 squash final goes down to wire

Wed, 2014-04-23 13:47
The battle of the Yukon’s top two Division 1 squash teams fittingly went down to the wire last night at Better Bodies Whitehorse.

Yukon cyclists raring to begin season

Wed, 2014-04-23 13:43
As another Yukon winter fades into history, bicycles are once again becoming a common sight on roadways.

Tai Chi Yukon set to celebrate 25 years

Wed, 2014-04-23 13:42
Tai Chi Yukon is getting ready to celebrate.

Running The Table

Wed, 2014-04-23 13:41
Abed Rajab competes in the Asian Tournament hosted by Table Tennis Yukon Saturday at Whitehorse Elementary School.