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North Slope Students Inspired by GeoForce

Alaska and Yukon Headlines - Mon, 2014-07-21 16:04

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Twenty-six high school students from the North Slope recently completed the third year of UAF’s GeoForce program. The four-year summer program gets students into the field to learn about geology hands-on. They’ve seen glaciers in Alaska, visited the Grand Canyon, and explored volcanoes in the northwest.

Program Coordinator Sarah Fowell says GeoForce aims to motivate the students to study science. “We think one of the reasons that rural students are under represented in science and math majors is perhaps that they don’t see the relevance to their lives and their communities. And, for example, they don’t see what a geoscientist would do for a living.”

The program is mostly funded by oil and gas companies that want to recruit local workers but need them to understand geology. To participate, the students have to maintain a B-average in science and math classes. Fowell says this helps keep them on track for graduation.

Participant Lolo Drigs from Wainwright says this year’s program, with visits to Mount St. Helens and Crater Lake, inspired her interest in the environment. “It got me interested in learning more about how everything forms and why they are there and how we can prevent certain disasters.”

Cynthia Kim from Barrow says at first she didn’t care about science, until she met her 8th grade teacher. “And she changed my whole perspective on science. And she opened my eyes to what science really encompasses. And it’s really about the whole world. Everything is pretty much science.”

With that enthusiasm, Kim was willing to face GeoForce challenges, like drawing a geological map of an area. She says it was hard. “’Cause it was kind of like this 2-D thing where you had to look at a piece of paper and think that it was 3-D. You had to look at it from a perspective that it was obviously not. So you had to put yourself onto the map and figure out where you are. That was pretty confusing.”

She says she still too young to know for sure, but she thinks she might want to become a geologist.

The program ends for this group of students next summer.

Oil Spill Drill Conducted Near Teller

Alaska and Yukon Headlines - Mon, 2014-07-21 16:02

Chadux officials set a skimmer down current from the Teller tank farm, near fish-racks and other subsistence equipment. (Photo by: Zachariah Hughes – KNOM)

Even as marine traffic increases past the Bering Strait, no one knows how well an oil spill could be cleaned up in the case of an accident. Stakeholders traveled to the region last week to conduct the region’s first spill response exercise, and learn more about the challenges posed.

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John Katula oversees marine vessels with the Alaska Department of Conservation, one of the agencies that organized a cleanup drill last Wednesday in the community of Teller, near Nome.

“We’ve got seven of the plan holders that actually move oil in through this area involved in the exercise, so that we can make sure that if there was a spill from any of the operators that we were prepared and that our contingency plans were designed correctly to respond to any spill,” Katula said, standing on the rocky spit connecting Teller with Brevig Mission as the tide came in.

It’s DEC’s job to decide whether fuel shippers are prepared to handle an accident. In the Bering Strait, companies that barge fuel to small communities up and down the coast don’t expect to be the ones actually cleaning up oil. Instead, they contract with Alaska Chadux, an Oil Spill Response Organization.

Colin Daugherty manages cleanup response for Chadux and helped deploy 30-foot-long strips of orange boom (the floating tubes that help collect oil) along the shore of Teller’s inner-harbor, near the tank farm.

Part of the drill included deploying 30-foot long strips of orange boom. (Photo by: Zarariah Hughes – KNOM)

“We brought everything to enact a Geographical Response Plan to protect Grantley Harbor,” Daugherty explained, equipment humming nearby. “The plan calls for 3600 feet of boom. So we brought two containers of boom and anchors and line. And this is equipment that’s staged in Nome. So this is permanently here for this type of event.”

Part of the drill was testing how long it took for a convoy with equipment to drive the 72 miles from Nome to Teller. Organizers were interested in small but vital questions like that because no oil spill response plan for the Bering Strait has been tested in the field. And with rough water and wind speeds around 20 miles per hour, the crew was forced to adjust the day’s original goals.

“I don’t think we’d know how to do this in good weather,” Daugherty said. “It’s usually bad weather that causes an incident. So we came here this morning and adapted—we didn’t want to get anybody hurt over this, over a training exercise. So we just went to something a little bit less weather affected by working the inner harbor.”

But rough weather is part of what Chadux and others agencies want to learn more about as they plan for expanded commercial activity in the Bering Strait.

DEC will sort through the data they collected with Chadux and revise plans that are on the books. Chadux, like most other Oil Spill Response Organizations working in Alaska has most of its equipment and personnel in Anchorage. They rely on storing caches of equipment in hub communities like Nome that can be deployed relatively quickly in case of an accident. Chadux general manager Matthew Melton said getting to actually see and experience conditions is essential, because even basic things like roads present challenges.

“That was something that didn’t occur to me until I was driving the road yesterday,” Melton summed up at a debrief Thursday morning over breakfast between all the drill’s participants. “If it was rainy and washed out and we put 20, 30 tractor-trailers going back and forth on their trips, that road’s gonna get beat up.”

Another point repeatedly raised is the need to work more closely with Bering Strait residents, Jacob Okbiok works for the Teller Native Fill business, and described the reason more residents did not turn out to observe the drill.

“It’s usually around this time of year when everybody’s at camp, and maybe around first of August is usually everybody comes back,” Okbiak said in between examining equipment staged on the beach and helping pack it away. “It’s kind of, you could say [an] oddish time to chose to do an oil spill response.”

Those are the kinds of things you might not know if you’ve never been to the region.

Strings of plastic boom fabric were set early Wednesday morning by the Inner Harbor, and on the rocky spit connecting Teller with fish camps at nearby Brevig Mission, which was partially washed out during storms last fall. (Photo by: Zachariah Hughes – KNOM)

The exercise in Teller did not answer many questions about how an oil spill in one of the most remote parts of the state will be handled. For example, while Teller has a road for rigs to haul equipment to, the rest of the 14 communities in the region do not. And though weather was rough enough to scramble plans for organizers, the water was ice-free with decent visibility–conditions that cannot be counted on most of the year.

However everyone involved in the drill, from fuel company reps to subsistence advocates, agreed this was an important first step in what needs to be a longer process.

 

 

Sunday night shoot spree results in no injuries

Alaska and Yukon Headlines - Mon, 2014-07-21 15:58

Few details are available about Sunday’s 3 am drive-by shooting in Anchorage near 47th Avenue and Arctic Blvd.  An Anchorage party bus with 17 people inside was shot 10 times by at least four different guns. Bullets entered through the back window and the body of the 28-passenger vehicle. No one was injured.

Left: Markers showing where APD found bullet casings.
Right: Bullet holes in the Anchorage Limo and Sedan vehicle.
Photos courtesy of APD.

The police contacted the driver about three and half miles away near Lake Otis and Northern Lights. All of but one of the occupants had fled when the bus stopped. The remaining witness told police she didn’t know why anyone would shoot at the bus. They had been at Al’s Alaska Inn for about two hours before the shooting. She said she didn’t know about any fights there.

Police are still trying to identify the shooters and locate people from the bus. They photographed and collected more than 30 shell casings at the scene. They say incidents like this are very rare.

Campaign Profile: Sullivan’s “Amazing Credentials”

Alaska and Yukon Headlines - Mon, 2014-07-21 14:45

Republican U.S Senate Candidate Dan Sullivan

As a Republican candidate for U.S. Senate, Dan Sullivan has a bucket of advantages. He married into an acclaimed Athabascan family. His own family, back in Cleveland, are six-figure donors to Republicans in high places. One of his biggest assets, though, is his resume.

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Degrees from Harvard and Georgetown. Positions in the White House and State Department. And, interspersed throughout, service as infantry officer in the Marines. Gov. Sarah Palin gushed about his “amazing credentials” just before she appointed him Alaska Attorney General. Topping off his C.V.: three years as Alaska’s Natural Resources Commissioner.

His resume is part of what impresses Irene Rowan, who has worked on Alaska Native issues since the 1960s and is close to Sullivan’s wife.

“I think he’ll do very well for Alaska in Washington,” she says. “He has the drive, he has knowledge of all the Alaska issues, and he knows how to move around in the system of Washington DC.”

Sullivan deploys his resume to strategic advantage. He says he’s the only candidate in the race who has a real record of fighting the policies of the Obama administration.

“Fighting the federal government’s over-reach, taking it to the Obama administration,” he said on KOAN recently. “A lot of candidates love to talk about that. I’ve had the honor of being in the arena, battling these guys.”

It’s a candidate’s job to sell his accomplishments.  But political opponents say his resume has thin spots and complain he oversells himself. Sullivan, for instance, often says he was one of the lead AGs in the country to challenge the legality of “Obamacare.”

“In terms of credibility candidates, I’m the one who sat down, the one who sued on this, the one who laid out a lot of the intellectual framework of why we thought (the Affordable Care Act) was unconstitutional,” he said.

Sullivan’s name is on a 2010 memo to Gov. Sean Parnell analyzing the legality of the Affordable Care Act.  But Alaska didn’t file its own challenge.  It attached its name to a lawsuit out of Florida, after 20 states were on already board. It’s much the same with the dragon all the Republican candidates pledge to slay – the EPA.

“We won a case that I brought, originally brought, just three days ago,” he said at a Republican debate in June. “In the U.S. Supreme Court! With the EPA! Putting them in their place.”

The case was about the EPA’s power to regulate greenhouse gas emissions, which, actually the Supreme Court left intact, at least for major smokestacks. Alaska tagged on to a case filed previously filed by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. These days Sullivan says he brought the case, but a press release from Sullivan’s time as AG strikes a softer tone. It quotes Sullivan saying the state’s involvement began in 2003 – years before Sullivan became attorney general.

As AG and later as DNR commissioner, Sullivan frequently cited his professional history during lobbying visits in Washington, says Russ Kelly. Kelly was an associate director of Gov. Parnell’s Washington, D.C. office and was assigned on several occasions to shadow Sullivan as he made the rounds of congressional offices.

“I was disappointed,” says Kelly. “I didn’t think the meetings went well. I didn’t think they were productive.”

After one trip, Kelly wrote a long memo to top Parnell staffers critiquing Sullivan’s work. It was recently emailed anonymously to APRN. Kelly, who had a bad break with the Parnell Administration, says he doesn’t know who’s distributing it. He says he wrote it because he felt a duty to report what he’d seen of Sullivan’s presentations on Capitol Hill.

“I was concerned that when you go into these offices and you don’t make the right impression and you don’t have substance to share, then you’re at risk of burning bridges and hurting relationships for the future,” he says.

In the 2011 memo, Kelly says in most offices, Sullivan spent too much time reciting his resume and basic facts about Alaska, even when, in Kelly’s opinion, the situation called for more complex answers.

But Kelly’s memo says Sullivan made good use of his connections, particularly with Ohio Sen. Rob Portman, with whom he exchanged family news. Sullivan has connections across Washington, but his link to Sen. Portman is especially valuable. Portman’s the chief fundraiser for the National Republican Senatorial Committee, an arm of the party. Over the years, Portman and his leadership fund have received tens of thousands of dollars from Sullivan relatives in Ohio and employees of RPM International. That’s the paint company Sullivan’s grandfather founded and his brother Frank now runs. The NRSC is supposed to remain neutral in a Republican primary, but Portman’s presence at a Sullivan fundraiser on Capitol Hill last fall helped raise his profile among national donors.

So far, Sullivan has raised $3.8 million, nearly 90% of it from out of state. He’s keeping pace with Sen. Mark Begich – quite a feat for a first-time candidate. Meanwhile, two Sullivan brothers and an ex-RPM board member have paid $125,000 to an independent campaign called Alaska’s Energy/America’s Values that’s dedicated to promoting Sullivan.

Sullivan brushes off questions about how his family’s political contacts may have helped him raise money from national groups.

“We worked hard to get in front of those groups and make our case that we were the strongest candidate to win this primary, win this race,” Sullivan says.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has run a TV ad promoting Sullivan. Sullivan’s brother Frank sits on the board of the U.S. Chamber. When pressed about any help his brother may have provided, Sullivan sticks to generalities.

“There’s been a lot of people who’ve been helpful …. A lot of people who have been helpful who care about America,” he said.

One of the gems of Sullivan’s resume is his military service. Sullivan was a full-time Marine for four years. As a reservist, he spent all of 2005 as staff to the general in charge of the entire Middle East.

“Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan – wherever he was …. I was with him,” he says.

Last year, Sullivan was called up for six weeks to Afghanistan, where he says he focused on dismantling terrorist networks. As an infantry officer, Sullivan is trained to “kick in doors and kill bad guys,” as he put it to a conservative group in Wasilla, according the Anchorage Daily News.  While rival Republican Joe Miller often calls himself a “combat vet,” that’s one thing Sullivan acknowledges is not on his resume.

“I do not consider myself combat in terms of kicking in doors, shooting, being shot at. I’m an infantry officer. I was a recon officer. I’ve spent years up here training hundreds of Alaskans to be recon officers,” he says.

Like Republican opponent Mead Treadwell, Sullivan has a history on the climate change question. These days, Sullivan sounds like a skeptic: “The consensus in the scientific community on what’s going on with regard to man-made global climate change is still out.”

But in 2007, as an assistant secretary of State, he flew to Germany to help sell the Bush climate initiative. At a press conference in Berlin, he insisted to a room of doubtful reporters that the administration was serious about helping meet UN targets for greenhouse gas reductions.

“Our goal, our stated goal, has been to slow, stop and reduce emissions,” Sullivan told them, according to the State Department transcript.

Sullivan says he thinks the scientific consensus on climate change has weakened since then.

Pink building pilots federal biomass boiler study

Southeast Alaska News - Mon, 2014-07-21 14:31

The Federal Building in Ketchikan, referred to by locals as “the pink building,” has been involved in an energy pilot project for the past couple of years. As a result, the General Services Administration, which owns the building, has decided that biomass is a viable alternative, and officials are looking into installing new boilers in other GSA-owned buildings nationwide.

http://www.krbd.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/21Biomass.mp3

Seattle-based GSA spokeswoman Stephanie Kenitzer said the pilot project in Ketchikan is part of the federal government’s Green Proving Ground Project, which tests new technology to see whether it works elsewhere.

“What we did learn is, indeed, biomass boilers are a good fit and a viable alternative for federal facilities for heating those buildings with hot water, primarily when natural gas is unavailable,” she said.

The study shows that biomass is most effective for buildings in a northern, cold climate, within about 50 miles of a wood pellet mill. And Ketchikan is home to a wood-pellet producer.

The biomass boiler at the pink building was paired with a high-efficiency oil-fired boiler for back-up. Those two boilers replaced a 1964-era, oil-fired steam heat system. Kenitzer said there was an immediate reduction in fuel oil use, but not so much in costs.

“In FY’12, we were able to cut our fuel purchase and fuel use in half,” she said. “We did, of course, have to supplement our fuel purchase with wood pellet purchase, so you’re not going to see a direct cost savings yet. Over time, you may see those kinds of results.”

Kenitzer said that saving money wasn’t really the goal of the pilot project. They just wanted to see whether the system worked, and could be used elsewhere. Sustainability is a bigger goal, with hoped-for lower costs later on.

“Ultimately, the point to push toward a biomass system is for sustainable reasons, and hopefully cost-effective solutions, as well,” she said. “Wood pellets are cheaper, so ultimately if we can move to that, that would be of benefit to the GSA, and ultimately the taxpayers.”

Biomass boilers burn wood pellets as a fuel source, rather than oil. Because wood is a renewable resource, biomass is touted as a more ecologically friendly energy choice.

But, Larry Edwards of the Sitka-based Greenpeace Alaska field office said that other technology could have provided even more benefit to everyone.

“Particularly here in Southeast, where we have renewable hydropower, they should also be looking at heat pumps and underground thermal energy storage,” he said.

Edwards said heat pumps run by hydroelectric power is something he’d like to see tested in Southeast Alaska.

“These methods will end up in lower greenhouse gas emissions in the long run, and also be more economical to run and be totally renewable,” he said.

Kenitzer said the study of Ketchikan’s pilot project looked into other GSA-owned buildings, to find any that could convert to biomass.

“We have identified 150 facilities where this technology would be beneficial and useful, but we’ve not made plans to actually deploy the technology in those facilities,” she said.

That’s about 10 percent of the GSA’s buildings nationwide, from Vermont to Washington. There’s also a handful in Alaska, in addition to Ketchikan’s Federal Building.

Kenitzer said each of those buildings will have to be studied now individually, to see whether installing new biomass boilers makes sense.

Other public facilities in Ketchikan are moving toward biomass as an option. The city-owned library already uses a pellet-fired boiler, and the borough is looking into biomass heat as an option for the high school and the airport.

Net Neutrality, Shall I Compare Thee To A Highway? A Showerhead?

NPR News - Mon, 2014-07-21 14:31

Net neutrality can be an issue that's difficult to understand and difficult to explain, so the metaphor that's used to describe it is kind of important. See what neutrality is being compared to.

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Net Neutrality, Shall I Compare Thee To A Highway? A Showerhead?

NPR News - Mon, 2014-07-21 14:31

Net neutrality can be an issue that's difficult to understand and difficult to explain, so the metaphor that's used to describe it is kind of important. See what neutrality is being compared to.

» E-Mail This

Funeral held for woman who gave birth in coma

Southeast Alaska News - Mon, 2014-07-21 14:22

BETHEL — A funeral has been held in Bethel for a local woman who gave birth while in a coma after spending most of her pregnancy as clinically brain-dead.

KYUK reported the family of 29-year-old Jessie Ayagalria also is holding an ongoing fundraiser to care for baby Faith. The funeral was held Saturday.

The baby was delivered by cesarean section July 8 at an Anchorage hospital. The family was notified of Ayagalria's death three days later.

Ayagalria's sister, Krissy Medina, plans to begin the process to legally adopt the baby.

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Parnell reports raising more than $285K

Southeast Alaska News - Mon, 2014-07-21 14:20

JUNEAU — Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell raised more than $285,000 during the latest reporting period, including $100,000 from the state Republican party.

Parnell reported having close to $450,000 on hand, with about one month to go before the primary. The other Republicans running are Russ Millette and Brad Snowden.

Millette was elected state GOP chairman during a boisterous 2012 election but was ousted by party leaders before taking over.

The report, filed with the Alaska Public Offices Commission, runs from Feb. 2 through July 18.

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Sandwich Monday: The Menage A Trois

NPR News - Mon, 2014-07-21 14:01

For this week's Sandwich Monday, we try the Menage A Trois sandwich from Ike's Place in San Francisco. It features chicken with three sauces and three cheeses.

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Sandwich Monday: The Menage A Trois

NPR News - Mon, 2014-07-21 14:01

For this week's Sandwich Monday, we try the Menage A Trois sandwich from Ike's Place in San Francisco. It features chicken with three sauces and three cheeses.

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Troopers charge Kentucky man with possession

Southeast Alaska News - Mon, 2014-07-21 13:56

A 39-year-old man was arrested in Ketchikan on Sunday, on a warrant out of Boone County, Kentucky. In addition to the warrant, Jay Campbell was charged with drug possession and promoting contraband.

According to Alaska State Troopers, the original offense for Campbell’s extraditable warrant was for allegedly violating conditions of his felony probation related to possession of methamphetamine.

Following his arrest on the warrant, and during the booking process at Ketchikan Correctional Center, Troopers say that a Suboxone strip was discovered hidden in Campbell’s mouth.

The additional charges stem from that discovery.

Can Scientists Protect Alaska’s Bats?

Alaska and Yukon Headlines - Mon, 2014-07-21 13:52

It’s 1 a.m., and the dim glow of the sun just peaks over the horizon at Potter Marsh, a popular bird watching spot in South Anchorage. Veronica Padula and Keegan Crowley, both students at the University of Alaska, meander down a zig-zagging boardwalk and scan the horizon. The two researchers aren’t trying to spot cranes or herons. They’re looking for bats.

“It’s like a treasure hunt,” Padula says with a chuckle.  “It’s fun when you find one. Last night we were really stoked when we finally found a bat.”

A map of the Little Brown Bat’s suspected range in Alaska. The Little Brown Bat is the most common bat in the state (Alaska Department of Fish and Game).

Padula and Crowley have been patrolling Potter Marsh for the past week; they want to determine where bats feed, so they can come back later with nets to catch animals for study. To assist in the hunt, Crowley uses a small ultrasonic recorder that captures bat calls and measures their frequency.

“When they’re feeding you’ll see a bunch of small, shorter calls because they’re trying to be really accurate to find the tiny insects,” Crowley explains, before being interrupted by the shrill chirp of a bat weaving a few feet in front of him through a meadow.

After reading the recorder, Crowley and Padula determine the bat is feeding. Maybe next week they can set up nets and catch the critter.

The research at Potter Mash is part of a broader effort to try and understand bats in Alaska—which live as far north as the Brooks Range in the Arctic Circle. “What we don’t know about bats far outweighs what we do know,” says David Tessler, a biologist with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

For example, scientists don’t know whether the mammal spend their winters in Alaska or migrate, if they nest in caves, trees, or man-made structures, or how long they’ve occupied the far north.  And while there are six known species of bats in Alaska—most living in south-east—there could be more.

“There aren’t many times in wildlife biology, especially down in the lower 48, where you can embark on something entirely unknown,” Tessler says, “and we know almost nothing about bats here, so that’s exciting.”

But the lack of information could make it hard to protect Alaska’s bats from the fungal disease White Nose Syndrome. First discovered in New York in 2006, the disease covers bats in white splotches of fungus, and causes them to come out of hibernation during the winter. Since being discovered, the disease has killed roughly six million bats in twenty five states and five Canadian provinces.

During White Nose Syndrome’s early days there were reports of swarms of bats hovering over interstates in daylight hours during the middle of winter—a time period when the animal typically hibernates. Some caves were found overflowing with tens of thousands of dead bats. And the animal displayed noticeably erratic behavior, such as charging visitors in the Great Smokey Mountains National Park.

Little Brown Bat effected by White Nose Syndrome hanging in a Vermont cave (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

“It’s been called the greatest wildlife disease of our lifetimes and it’s impacting the mammal in a major way,” says David Coleman, national White Nose Syndrome coordinator with the US Fish and Wildlife Service.  “We are seeing demise akin to the passenger pigeon and the American bison.”

While White Nose Syndrome hasn’t made it to Alaska yet, that doesn’t mean the state’s safe. Researchers say the disease is traveling about 200 miles per year, and the fungus has the potential to spread throughout all of North America. If it does find its way to the last frontier, it could wreak havoc on the state’s ecosystem. One obvious impact would be an increase in the number of small insects.

“It’s been estimated that one bat can eat as many as 5,000 mosquitoes a night, so they’re actually very, very useful in controlling pests,” Tessler says.

With such a shortage of information on Alaska’s bats, though, it’s hard to know if or when the disease will arrive. Which is why Veronica Padula and Keegan Crowley are romping through Potter Marsh in the early morning hours, trying to find and catch bats.

“It helps us get to know better where they’re roosting and if they’re staying here over winter or migrating,” Padula says. “A bat in the hand can tell us many, many things.”

Hospital Settles Lawsuit By Thousands Of Women Over Exam Photos

NPR News - Mon, 2014-07-21 13:51

The Baltimore-based Johns Hopkins Health System will pay $190 million to settle a class-action lawsuit that includes more than 7,000 women.

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Hospital Settles Lawsuit By Thousands Of Women Over Exam Photos

NPR News - Mon, 2014-07-21 13:51

The Baltimore-based Johns Hopkins Health System will pay $190 million to settle a class-action lawsuit that includes more than 7,000 women.

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Companies file export application for Alaska LNG

Southeast Alaska News - Mon, 2014-07-21 13:12

JUNEAU — The companies pursuing a major liquefied natural gas project in Alaska have applied for an export license with the U.S. Department of Energy.

Securing the authorization is seen as critical for the viability of the mega-project, which the companies say would be the largest of its kind ever designed and built.

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Companies file export application for Alaska LNG

Southeast Alaska News - Mon, 2014-07-21 13:12

JUNEAU — The companies pursuing a major liquefied natural gas project in Alaska have applied for an export license with the U.S. Department of Energy.

Securing the authorization is seen as critical for the viability of the mega-project, which the companies say would be the largest of its kind ever designed and built.

read more

17 billionth barrel flows down Alaska pipeline

Southeast Alaska News - Mon, 2014-07-21 13:05

JUNEAU — The trans-Alaska pipeline has moved its 17 billionth barrel of oil.

The operator of the 37-year-old pipeline, Alyeska Pipeline Service Co., announced the milestone Monday.

It has been nearly five years since the 16 billionth barrel flowed down the line, in October 2009.

The 800-mile pipeline is the economic lifeblood of the state, which relies heavily on oil revenues to run. The pipeline runs from the prodigious North Slope to Valdez, from where tankers are shipped.

Alyeska says the pipeline has generated about $180 billion in state revenue.

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17 billionth barrel flows down Alaska pipeline

Southeast Alaska News - Mon, 2014-07-21 13:05

JUNEAU — The trans-Alaska pipeline has moved its 17 billionth barrel of oil.

The operator of the 37-year-old pipeline, Alyeska Pipeline Service Co., announced the milestone Monday.

It has been nearly five years since the 16 billionth barrel flowed down the line, in October 2009.

The 800-mile pipeline is the economic lifeblood of the state, which relies heavily on oil revenues to run. The pipeline runs from the prodigious North Slope to Valdez, from where tankers are shipped.

Alyeska says the pipeline has generated about $180 billion in state revenue.

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What The Odds Fail To Capture When A Health Crisis Hits

NPR News - Mon, 2014-07-21 13:05

Making health decisions based on the odds can be an extremely difficult thing to do when you're a patient, even for people who study the science of how we make decisions.

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