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December 12, 2012

Today's Eventstodaysevents 


The House will consider a number of legislative items under suspension of the rules. Additionally, the House may continue work on the National Defense Authorization Act. The Senate will continue work on federal deposit insurance.


Marine Mammal Commission meeting on Tribal Consultation, December 10-12, 2012. The Commission plans to meet with representatives of other federal agencies, Alaska Native organizations, the Environmental Law Institute, and other interested parties to review and seek ways to improve consultations between federal agencies and Alaska Native Tribes. The focus will be on the consultation process and will include, but not be limited to, matters involving marine mammals. In the course of the meeting, the Commission expects to discuss issues related to the authorities for Alaska Native consultations, the role of the Indigenous People's Council for Marine Mammals (IPCoMM) in consultations, the relationship between consultation and co-management, and lessons learned from conflict avoidance agreements. 



White House Condemns North Korea Missile Launch. The White House denounced North Korea's ballistic missile launch as a "highly provocative act" further distancing Pyongyang from the international community. The launch - North Korea's second of the year - comes in violation of United Nations Security Council resolutions and "is yet another example of North Korea's pattern of irresponsible behavior," National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor said in a statement late Tuesday. The United States and the UN, he added, will work together "to pursue appropriate action." Politico 


KerryAs Secretary John Kerry Would Elevate Climate Issues. If Sen. John Kerry becomes the next secretary of State or Defense, he will likely raise climate change to a top-tier priority in either agency. Kerry, the Massachusetts Democrat who chairs the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, has long been viewed as a likely candidate to replace Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. While United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice more recently had been viewed as the top contender for the post, fierce Republican resistance to her candidacy now appears to be making Kerry, who would probably face a relatively easy Senate confirmation, the more likely candidate. Government Executive


Obama Lags Bush, Clinton in Nominating Second-Term Cabinet. President Obama hasn't nominated anyone to his second-term Cabinet more than a month after his reelection, putting him well behind the pace set by Presidents Clinton and Bush. Clinton had nominated new secretaries of State and Defense by Dec. 5, while Bush had nominated seven new Cabinet members by Dec. 10, including an attorney general and secretary of State. The Hill 


Second Whaling Commission Director Sentenced. The second of two former Alaska Eskimo Whaling Commission executive directors to admit to misusing commission funds was sentenced Monday to six months in prison and ordered to pay back more than $100,000.Barrow resident Teresa Judkins, 52, took over as the commission's executive director in 2007 following the firing of Maggie Ahmaogak, who also admitted to embezzling commission money, later determined to be about $393,000. She was sentenced in November to 41 months in prison and ordered to pay back the money. Anchorage Daily News


A Kerry Cabinet Job Spells More Combative Senate. The Senate has displayed a general deference toward the Obama administration's foreign policy in the past four years, but it could become a far more raucous and combative place if Foreign Relations Chairman John Kerry is tapped to join the Cabinet. The Massachusetts Democrat is on President Barack Obama's short list for secretary of State or Defense, and Kerry would almost certainly breeze through confirmation (unlike another possible nominee for State, U.N. Ambassador Susan E. Rice). Congressional Quarterly


NASA radar--operation ice bridgeNye Says Don't Forget The 'Final Frontier.' For some of planetary science's biggest fans, NASA has no substitute."No other agency can do what those guys do," said Bill Nye, known as "The Science Guy" from his PBS show of the same name. "No other space agency can land sophisticated instruments on Mars with the ability to look for signs of water and life. Nobody else can do that. So to lose that ability would be a tragedy, not just for the United States, but for mankind. If those people are compelled to find other jobs in other industries, you'll never find them again." Politico


UIHI Launches Native Generations Campaign to Protect Native Babies. For every 1,000 American Indian and Alaska Native babies born in U.S. cities, as many as 15 die before their first birthday. To raise awareness and share valuable health and prevention messages about this problem, the Urban Indian Health Institute (UIHI) has launched Native Generations, a campaign addressing the high rates of infant mortality among American Indians and Alaska Natives. The campaign was made possible by funding from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Minority Health. Seattle Post Intelligencer


C130US, Canada Expand Arctic Cooperation, Military Training. The United States and Canada entered into two new agreements today that expanded their security relationship by promoting closer cooperation in peacefully opening the Arctic and in expanding their bilateral military training and exercise program. Army Gen. Charles Jacoby Jr., commander of North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S. Northern Command, joined Canadian Army Lt. Gen. Stuart Beare, commander of Canadian Joint Operations Command, in signing the Tri-Command Framework for Arctic Cooperation during a meeting of the Permanent Joint Board of Defense at the U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colo. The Department of Defense 

Legislative Actionfutureevents  


No Arctic legislation was formally considered yesterday.

Future Events                      


Marine Mammal Commission Meeting on Research and Management Priorities, December 14, 2012. The Commission plans to meet with regional management and scientific officials in each of the National Marine Fisheries Service's six regions to identify the most pressing marine mammal research and management needs. The Commission will use these meetings to develop a set of national priorities for guiding federal conservation efforts for marine mammals. Members of the public are invited to attend these meetings and to provide comments concerning priority issues.


**Abstract submission period EXTENDED through December 15th**

Wakefield28th Wakefield Symposium: Responses of Arctic Marine Ecosystems to Climate Change, March 26-29, 2013. This symposium seeks to advance our understanding of responses of arctic marine ecosystems to climate change at all trophic levels, by documenting and forecasting changes in environmental processes

and species responses to those changes. Presentations will focus on collaborative approaches to understanding and managing living marine resources in a changing Arctic, and to managing human responses to changing arctic marine ecosystems. Hosted by Alaska Sea Grant and sponsors.  


Alaska Marine Science Symposium, January 21-25, 2013. Since 2002, scientists from Alaska, the Pacific Northwest, and beyond have come to the Symposium to communicate research activities in the marine regions off Alaska. Researchers and students in marine science re-connect with old colleagues and meet new ones. Plenary and poster sessions feature a broad spectrum of ocean science. Hear the latest in the fields of climate, oceanography, lower trophic levels, the benthos, fishes and invertebrates, seabirds, marine mammals, local and traditional knowledge, and socioeconomic research. The Symposium also features compelling keynote speakers, workshops and special sessions.


Alaska Forum on the Environment, February 4-8, 2013. Hosted by The Alaska Forum, Inc. the 2013 Alaska Forum on the Environment will follow up on previous forums by offering training and information, includes plenary sessions, on: climate change, emergency response, environmental regulations, fish and wildlife populations, rural issues, energy, military issues, business issues, solid waste, contaminants, contaminated site cleanup, mining and others.  For 2013, the forum will expand forum content to provide information to help better understand issues surrounding coastal communities. This will include tsunami impacts, marine debris, and coastal erosion.


Arctic Observing Summit 2013, April 30- May 2, 2013. The Arctic Observing Summit is led by the International Study of Arctic Change (ISAC). It is a Sustaining Arctic Observing Network (SAON) task and part of the broader SAON implementation process, which is led by the Arctic Council jointly with the International Arctic Science Committee (IASC) and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). AOS is a high-level, biennial summit that aims to provide community-driven, science-based guidance for the design, implementation, coordination and sustained long term (decades) operation of an international network of arctic observing systems. The AOS will provide a platform to address urgent and broadly recognized needs of arctic observing across all components of the arctic system, including the human component. It will foster international communication and coordination of long-term observations aimed at improving understanding and responding to system-scale arctic change. The AOS will be an international forum for optimizing resource allocation through coordination and exchange among researchers, funding agencies, and others involved or interested in long term observing activities, while minimizing duplication and gaps.


International Conference on Arctic Ocean Acidification, May 6-8, 2013.

The Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Program (AMAP), the Institute of Marine Research, the Norwegian Institute for Water Research, the Scientific Committee on Oceanic Research, and the University of British Columbia, Canada, host a conference to consider Arctic Ocean acidification. Topics will include

response of Arctic Ocean to increasing CO2 and related changes in the global carbon cycle, social and policy challenges, Arctic Ocean acidification and ecological and biogeochemical coupling, implications of changing Arctic Ocean acidification for northern (commercial and subsistence) fisheries, and future developments.

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