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 February 15, 2013

Today's Eventstodaysevents 


The House is expected to complete consideration federal pay legislation and consider a resolution condemning North Korea for testing a nuclear device. The Senate is not in session.


Kerry Murkowski Urges Secretary of State Kerry to Maintain American Leadership, Momentum in Arctic. Senator Lisa Murkowski reached out to new Secretary of State John Kerry, asking him to prioritize America's Arctic engagement as his predecessor did, with Murkowski becoming the first U.S. Senator to participate in the Arctic Parliamentarians' conference in 2011 with former Secretary of State Clinton - making a high-profile national commitment to Arctic issues.

In a letter to the Department of State, Senator Murkowski call upon expanded U.S. leadership in a region currently at a crossroads - with Arctic waters opening and international policies being created. Alaska Business Monthly  


Aberdeen Scientists Trawl Arctic Seabed for Antibiotics as World Faces 'Apocalypse.' The desperate search for new life-saving antibiotics has reached new lows, as scientists dredge the Arctic and Antarctic seabed to try to find new medications. Dame Sally Davies, England's chief medical officer, recently warned that the world is facing an "apocalyptic scenario" as we are fast running out of antibiotics.The over-use and reliance on antibiotics has meant that many diseases are now resistant to them. International Business Times 


Arctic Ice Loss Causing Big Changes. Last year's record loss of Arctic sea ice is already causing big changes for plants and animals that scientists are just starting to understand, according to newly published research. "It takes only one season to change how a deepsea system functions," said Antje Boetius, who was the head scientist aboard a German research vessel that sailed through the High Arctic last summer. That voyage of the Polar-stern, owned by Germany's Alfred Wegener Institute, couldn't have come at a more interesting time. Regina Leader Post


Begich Attends First Hearing as Member of Appropriations Committee. U.S. Sen. Begich today attended his first Senate Appropriations Committee where he now serves with Sen. Lisa Murkowski. Having both senators on this powerful committee is an important advantage for Alaska and its unique needs. "I was pleased to attend my first Appropriations hearing today with Senator Murkowski and look forward to working together to protect Alaska's interests on this critical committee," said Begich. Senator Mark Begich


Murkowski Pushes Senate Panel on "Enormously Disruptive" Alaskan Impacts of Sequestration. With $85 billion in across-the-board federal cuts set to begin on March 1st, Senator Lisa Murkowski today pressed administration officials about the rationale being used and attempted to get hard specifics about where those cuts will be made.  In a hearing of the Senate Appropriations Committee - one which Murkowski had asked the Committee Chairs to hold - Murkowski used the opportunity to prod the witnesses to give more details or explain their process. Senator Lisa Murkowski


permafrost GAO Highlights Financial Risks to Government of Climate Change. The nonpartisan Government Accountability Office on Thursday identified climate change as posing serious financial risks to the U.S. government, fueling further calls by Democrats for actions to curb emissions. In testimony before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, Comptroller General of the United States Gene L. Dodaro announced that the GAO for the first time is adding climate change to its list of highest risks to the U.S. government. Roll Call


russian flag Exxon Mobile Grows Arctic Research in Russia. Exxon Mobil Corp. vastly expanded its reach in Russia's Arctic on Wednesday, announcing it had signed an agreement to grow its exploration territory there by more than five-fold. The world's largest non-state oil company said Wednesday it had expanded an agreement with Russia's Rosneft to explore an additional 395,383 square miles off that nation's frigid northern coast. Fuel Fix


SCICEX. The Science Advisory Committee (Chaired by Jackie Richter Menge of CRREL) of the Submarine Arctic Science Program icex sub(SCICEX) completed its first meeting in 2013, and more information about this meeting, and the outcomes will soon be released. For now, those interested in the program, which provides publicly available data from US submarines that travel through the Arctic, can visit the SCICEX website, hosted by the National Snow and Ice Data Center, here.  


Arctic Port Study Highlights Nome, Teller. Nome and nearby Port Clarence will get additional scrutiny as possible sites for a deep-water port for vessels in Arctic waters, according to a report by state and federal officials.Nome, a historic Alaska Gold Rush community, and Port Clarence, which has served as a safe haven for mariners since whaling days and includes the small community of Teller, received top marks out of 14 locations reviewed for a port that could serve the increasing number of vessels transiting the northern Bering Sea to reach the Chukchi and Beaufort seas off Alaska's northwest and north coast. Anchorage Daily News

Legislative Actionfutureevents  


No formal legislative action was taken on Arctic legislation yesterday.

Future Events                      


Alaska Native Language Archive, February 22, 2013, Fairbanks. Please join ANLA and the Rasmuson Library for a Grand Opening Celebration to dedicate the new ANLA public service point on the second floor of the Rasmuson Library. The event will begin with an open house featuring collections in the Alaska and Polar Regions Collections, the Oral History Collection, and of course ANLA. This will be followed by a special panel session entitled Honoring Alaska's Native Languages: Past, Present, Future, reflecting on 50 years of Native language archiving at UAF.


Environmental Protection in the Arctic, March 1, 2013, Anchorage, Alaska. The Canadian Consulate General in Seattle will host a discussion of environmental protection issues with David Hik, President, International Arctic Science Committee, University of Alberta; Fran Ulmer, Chair, United States Arctic Research Commission; and Lilian Alessa, Director, NSF Alaska EPSCoR Program.  The event will be held at Rusmuson Hall 101, the University of Alaska Anchorage campus at 5pm. Email to RSVP.


Tufts Energy Conference, March 2-3, 2013, Medford, MA.Availability, accessibility, affordability, and acceptability: these "Four As" are at the core of global energy security. As energy demands increase around the world, the global community must balance the "Four As" while keeping up with need. Thanks to major innovations in extraction technologies, fossil fuels remain an available and affordable global asset. Yet climate change, geopolitical risk, and environmental impacts are changing the energy debate and challenging the acceptability of fossil fuels. In the short term, emerging green technologies often lack accessibility, availability, and affordability. TEC 2013 will explore how both developing and developed countries are working to meet their energy needs, manage geopolitical risk, and ensure energy security. Through six diverse but interconnected panels, TEC 2013 will address a number of pressing questions.


The 43rd Annual Arctic Workshop 2013, March 11-13, 2013: Amherst, Massachusetts. The workshop is an annual gathering for international researchers to present work on any aspect of high-latitude environments (past, present, and future). Organizers strive for a relaxed, friendly, and interactive experience, fostered in part by the workshop's relatively small size. Researchers are invited to present their very latest research; the abstract deadline is just a few weeks before the workshop. Student participation is strongly encouraged, with partial support available to those making presentations (limited number of slots). 


The Economist's "Arctic Summit: A New Vista for Trade Energy and the Environment," March 12, 2013. (Oslo, Norway) The event is hosted by The Economist. The Arctic Summit will discuss big issues concerning the region: chase for natural resources, impact of climate change, emergence of new trading routes and the need for responsible governance. The summit has been designed to focus attention and to promote constructive thinking prior to the next Arctic Council Ministers' meeting in 2013. A high-level group of 150 policy-makers, CEOs and influential commentators will spend a day tackling the issues at the heart of the Arctic's future, in discussions led by James Astill, environment editor of The Economist and author of the special report on the Arctic.


Wakefield28th Wakefield Symposium: Responses of Arctic Marine Ecosystems to Climate Change, March 26-29, 2013, Anchorage. 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. 


Arctic Science Summit Week, April 13-19, 2013. Krakow, Poland. The ASSW is the annual gathering of international organizations engaged in supporting and facilitating Arctic research. Its purpose is to provide opportunities for international coordination, collaboration and cooperation in all fields of Arctic science and to combine science and management meetings. Side meetings organized by groups with interest in the Arctic science and policy will also be held within the week.
One of them is already planned: The Association of Polar Early Career Scientists (APECS) will offer a one-day career development workshop during the ASSW 2013. Details will be published closer to the event:


American Polar Society 75th Anniversary, April 15-18, 2013, Woods Hole, MA. The American Polar Society will hold a meeting and symposium at Woods Hole, Massachusetts. This meeting and symposium is titled "The Polar Regions in the 21st Century: Globalization, Climate Change and Geopolitics."


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.


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. 

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