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April 30, 2013

 

The House and Senate are in recess this week.

 

Alaska Rural Energy Conference, April 29-May 1, 2013. (Anchorage Alaska)The Alaska Rural Energy Conference is a three day event offering a large variety of technical sessions covering new and ongoing energy projects in Alaska, as well as new technologies and needs for Alaska's remote communities. Building on the growing success, the Alaska Energy Authority and the Alaska Center for Energy and Power have joined forces again to organize and sponsor the 8th annual Alaska Rural Energy Conference. 

Media
 

Hayes DOI's Number Two David Hays Stepping Down. It was only a few weeks ago that David Hayes, the Deputy Secretary of the Interior Department, confessed to the Loop that his dream job was being a golf teaching pro at Pebble Beach. It looks like he's getting a little closer to that fantasy gig: Hayes announced Tuesday that he's trading Washington for Palo Alto, where he'll be teaching at his alma mater, Stanford Law, and senior fellowing at the Hewlett Foundation. Washington Post

 

 

Helping Nunavut Artists Adapt to a Changing Marketplace. Inuit art sales have been slow to rebound following the collapse of financial markets in 2008, say major wholesale buyers. They're taking steps to help Nunavut artists adapt to a changing marketplace. Debbie Jones, vice-president of art marketing for Arctic Co-operatives Ltd., said the buyers that remain are an elite group looking for high quality pieces. Alaska Dispatch

 

ConocoPhillips Finishes Winter Exploration Well in NPR-A, Demobilizes Rig. ConocoPhillips has completed an exploration well in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska and is demobilizing the drill rig, a company spokeswoman said April 26. Doyon Drilling Rig 141 drilled the Cassin test in the ConocoPhillips-operated Bear Tooth Unit in the northeast NPR-A. The location is about 38 miles west of the producing Alpine field that is also operated by ConocoPhillips, company spokeswoman Natalie Lowman said. Alaska Journal

 

Polar bear Yukon Conservative MP Accused on Peddling 'Bogus' Information on Polar Bears. A Conservative MP has been peddling what researchers describe as "bogus" information on polar bears and citing U.S. climate skeptics as experts on the iconic creatures. In a letter that shocked scientists, Yukon MP Ryan Leef said: "The global polar bear population has quadrupled over the last 40 years." The letter, which Leef wrote to a constituent in February, said many "pessimistic studies" about the bears have been judged "unscientific and inconsequential to decision makers" by U.S. researchers. The researchers he refers to are well-known climate sceptics. Canada.com

 

Shell Australia Head to Run US Arctic Operations. Royal Dutch Shell is moving its Australian head to run operations in the U.S. Arctic Ocean, a person familiar with the matter said Tuesday, as the oil major attempts to recover from a series of drilling setbacks in the icy north. Ann Pickard, who has been overseeing billions of dollars of investments in Australian gas-export projects, will take up a new role in the U.S. on June 1, the person said. Wall Street Journal

 

Jewell, Sally New Interior Chief Savors a Steep Learning Curve. Sally Jewell bounded up a granite boulder near the peak of Old Rag Mountain and turned back to her hiking companion, who was staring up at the smooth rock that offered no obvious hand- or footholds. "Trust your feet," she said.  That mountaineer's mantra has carried Ms. Jewell through a lifetime of challenging ascents and a varied career as petroleum engineer, banker and retail executive. On April 12, she was sworn in as the 51st secretary of the interior. New York Times

 

Republicans Say Peer Review Isn't Enough. House of Representatives science committee chair Lamar Smith, a Republican from Texas, is writing a bill that would mandate new funding criteria for National Science Foundation (NSF) grants. Called the "High Quality Research Act," the bill would require the NSF to judge research on three criteria, according to a copy of the draft legislation obtained by ScienceInsider and The Huffington Post. According to the draft, all funded research must "advance the national health, prosperity, or welfare" and "secure the national defense" of the United States. The NSF must certify that each funded project is of "the finest quality, is groundbreaking, and answers questions or solves problems that are of utmost importance to society of large." Finally, funded projects can't duplicate work already being funded by the government. The Scientist

 

arcticcouncil Arctic Council: EU Out But China Likely In, Academics Say. The word on the fate of nations seeking observer status at the Arctic Council is that the European Union is likely out, and China is likely in. This was the opinion of most participants at an April 26 academic conference on Canada and the Arctic Council at the Montreal-based Observatoire de la politique et de la sÚcuritÚ de l'Arctique, an Arctic policy and security think-tank. That's because for admittance of an observer to the consensus-based Arctic Council, eight member states of the council must agree on all decisions. That means every member state holds an effective veto. Nunatsiaq Online

Legislative Actionfutureevents  

 

No formal legislative action was taken on Arctic legislation yesterday.

Future Events                      

                
2013 Arctic Energy Summit-Call for Papers ABSTRACT DEADLINE EXTENDED TO APRIL 30th The deadline to submit an abstract for the 2013 Arctic Energy Summit has been extended to April 30th.  Submissions can include proposals for papers, workshops, and panels.  The 2013 Arctic Energy Summit will bring together industry officials, scientists, academics, policy makers, energy professionals, and community leaders to collaborate on Arctic energy issues. The 2013 Arctic Energy Summit will address energy extraction, production, and transmission in the Arctic as it relates to the theme of "Richness, Resilience & Responsibility:  The Arctic as a Lasting Frontier." The Summit is October 8-10 in Akureyri, Iceland.   

 

Arctic Observing Summit 2013, April 30- May 2, 2013, Vancouver, BC, CA. 

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, Bergen, Norway. 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.

 

Private Sector Transportation, Infrastructure, Assets, Response, Capacity, and Development in the Arctic, May 30, 2012, Seattle, WA. A recently-held Arctic transportation workshop in Iceland highlighted the need to better understand private sector transportation infrastructure and assets, recognizing industry's role in the responsible development of resources, response and supportive infrastructure. As a follow-up to its efforts to inventory and map Arctic transportation infrastructure, the Institute of the North is hosting a workshop at the Bell Harbor International Conference Center in Seattle, Washington that focuses on three critical areas: private sector assets and infrastructure in the Arctic, staging areas outside the Arctic that support Northern development, and vessels and technology that are difficult to map but need to be measured for future decision-making. Participants include industry representatives, technical experts, researchers, Coast Guard and other response personnel.

 

** New** 10th International Symposium on Cold Regions Development (ISCORD 2013) (June 2-5, 2013) (Anchorage, Alaska) The International Association for Cold Regions Development Studies (IACORDS) and the Technical Council on Cold Regions Engineering of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) will host a conference on "Planning for Sustainable Cold Regions." Special Keynote Sessions each day include "Bridging the Gap Between Climate Change Science and Engineering Practice"; "The Challenges of the Debris from the 2011 Tohoku Earthquake in Japan"; and "Energy in Alaska - Current and Future Projects." 

 

AGU Science Policy Conference, June 24-26, 2013. (Washington, DC) Hundreds of Earth and space scientists, students, policymakers, and industry professionals will discuss key Earth and space science topics that address challenges to our economy, national security, environment, and public safety. This meeting will focus on the science that helps inform policymakers' decisions related to energy, natural hazards, technology and infrastructure, climate, oceans, and the Arctic. The event is hosted by American Geophysical Union (AGU), a Washington, D. C.-based international nonprofit scientific association.

 

5th Symposium on the Impacts of an Ice-Diminishing Arctic on Naval and icedimArctic Maritime Operations, July 16-18, 2013 (Washington, D.C.). The U.S. National/Naval Ice Center (NIC) and the U.S. Arctic Research Commission (USARC) co-host this follow-on symposium to address the changing state of Arctic sea ice and associated environmental conditions vis-a-vis emerging or expected naval, maritime, and associated activities and operations in the region. Invited speakers include nationally and internationally recognized experts on Arctic observations, climate change, and maritime operations.

 

** New** The 2013 Arctic Energy Summit, October 8-10, (Akureyri, Iceland). The 2013 Arctic Energy Summit is a multidisciplinary event expected to draw together several hundred industry officials, scientists, academics, policymakers, energy professionals and community leaders to collaborate and share leading approaches on Arctic energy issues. Building on the work done at the highly successful 2007 Arctic Energy Summit and Technology Conference, the 2013 Summit will address energy extraction, production and transmission in the Arctic as it relates to three thematic areas: richness, resilience and responsibility.  The 2013 Summit will be hosted by the Institute of the North in cooperation with local host Arctic Portal.

 

The Inaugural Meeting of The Arctic Circle, October 12-14, 2013 (Reykjavik, Iceland). The inaugural Arctic Circle will be held October 12-14, 2013. Subsequent Arctic Circle gatherings will be held in a different Arctic location each year, so that participants can become familiar with the challenges, needs and opportunities presented by these unique environments. The agenda for the first Arctic Circle gathering will include plenary sessions with international leaders on emerging topics of interest, such as: Sea ice melt and extreme weather; Security in the Arctic; Fisheries and ecosystem management; Shipping and transportation infrastructure; Arctic Resources; and Tourism.

 

Arctic Cities, Global Processes, and Local Realities, December 2-4, 2013 (Rovaniemi, Finland) The conference is organized jointly by the City of Rovaniemi and the Arctic Centre of the University of Lapland, Finland. The goal of the conference is to present the latest research scientific knowledge about the global processes as they become local realities. Even if the Conference is scientific in orientation, it aims to bridge science and knowledge into action by bringing top scholars to share their research results, and to organize joint discussion with the leaders of the Arctic Cities. Sessions include: Rovaniemi Process: past, present, future; Arctic responses to global environmental problems; people and extractive industries; tourism in the Arctic; the Arctic in global economy; climate change in the Arctic; indigenous peoples in cities; and, Arctic global flows. Cross cutting themes include: Arctic cities and global processes; management and governance in the Arctic; and, Arctic together with non-Arctic.

 

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