Arctic Update Header
 January 29, 2013

Today's Eventstodaysevents 



The Senate will consider legislative business. The House will hold a pro forma session.


Development of a 5-Year Strategic Plan for Oil Spill Research in Canadian Arctic Waters, January 28-29, 2013, Calgary. This workshop is sponsored by the Environmental Studies Research Fund (ESRF), a research program which sponsors environmental and social studies pertaining petroleum exploration, development, and production activities on frontier lands. The ESRF is directed by a joint government, industry and public management board and is administered by the secretariat, which resides in the Office of Energy Research and Development, Natural Resources Canada, Ottawa, Ontario. The workshop is held in an effort to produce a 5-year strategic plan for oil spill research in Canadian Arctic marine waters.



KerryKerry Likely to Face Great Green Expectations at State Department. Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) can expect little opposition today when his Senate colleagues vote on his confirmation to be the United States' top diplomat. But from the time he enters 2201 C St. NW as secretary of State, the career-long proponent of action on climate change will face very high expectations from environmentalists and others who hope his ascension will make a significant difference on issues they care about, ranging from the international climate talks to the Keystone XL oil pipeline permit. E&E News


Landrieu Floats Blanche Lincoln for Next Secretary. Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) yesterday said her preferred candidate to replace Interior Secretary Ken Salazar is former Arkansas Sen. Blanche Lincoln, who, like Landrieu, is a moderate Democrat and has supported expanded drilling in federal waters. "My favorite person for that position would be Blanche Lincoln, but I don't know if she is interested or not," Landrieu told E&E Daily yesterday. E&E News


obamaRuling That Limits Recess Appointments Could Affect Obama's Picks for EPA, Interior. A federal appeals court ruling Friday has many White House observers wondering whether President Obama will ever be able to use recess appointments again, and what that means for a bevy of top-level Cabinet openings that require Senate confirmation -- especially those likely to generate controversy like U.S. EPA and the Interior Department. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled that Obama exceeded his constitutional authority when he appointed three members to the National Labor Relations Board last year because the Senate was not technically in recess (E&ENews PM, Jan. 25). E&E News


Representative Nageak Pleased with Jacob Adams Appointment. Representative Benjamin Nageak, Barrow's Democratic representative, made a statement yesterday concerning the appointment of Jacob Adams to the Alaska Arctic Policy Commission. The appointment, made by the Speaker of the House Mike Chenault the Republican representative from Nikiski on the House Floor, named Adams as the final alternate. It was House Concurrent Resolution 23 that created the 24- member Commission during the second session of the 27th Legislature. The commission operates within the legislature to work with stakeholders and governments to create a state-wide Arctic policy. Alaska Native News


Alaska Lieutenant Governor Draws Attention to Arctic Maritime Safety. On the first day of the Arctic Frontiers conference, Alaska Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell gave a speech full of metaphors heralding a "new age of Arctic global shipping." In the "geopolitics of a new ocean" (a phrase ripe for unpacking), he called for making the Arctic "safe, secure, and reliable at sea." Alaska Dispatch


arcticcouncilArctic Council Has Tightrope to Walk in Potential Decision to Admit China. As Canada's Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq prepares to take over the chairmanship of the Arctic Council, she'll have to learn to perform a difficult diplomatic pirouette, says a leading Canadian Arctic policy expert. At issue is the upcoming vote at the Arctic Council Ministerial meeting in Kiruna, Sweden, in May 2013 on whether to give China, the European Union, India, Italy, Japan, South Korea and Singapore permanent observer status at the Council. Rob Huebert, the Associate Director of the Centre for Military and Strategic Studies at the University of Calgary, says the trick for Canada would be to find a way to say 'Yes' to China, while saying 'No' to the EU. Alaska Dispatch


Murkowski Introduces Bill to Restore Subsistence Harvest of Gull Eggs in Southeast Alaska. U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, yesterday reintroduced legislation restoring the traditional rights of the Huna Tlingit to gather glaucous-winged gull eggs in Glacier Bay National Park as part of their subsistence hunting activities. "The Huna Tlingit have gathered gull eggs as part of their traditional subsistence activities for centuries - certainly long before Glacier Bay was made into a national park," Murkowski said. "Gull eggs are part of their traditional diet and cultural identity, and I believe it's an activity they should be allowed to continue legally." Alaska Native News


UAVThe Arctic: Drones Find Peacetime Role in the Frozen North. In the jargon of the polar world, they are called growlers, icebergs too small to be picked up by satellites but big enough to damage any boats unlucky enough to run into them. That makes them a problem for the growing number of energy companies trying to exploit the Arctic's oil and gas riches. It is one reason the Arctic is becoming a civilian proving ground for a piece of equipment more commonly associated with the Afghan war and other conflicts: the drone. Financial Times

Legislative Actionfutureevents  


No Arctic legislation was formally considered yesterday.


Future Events                      



Alaska Forum on the Environment, February 4-8, 2013, Anchorage. 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.


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.


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. 

USARC header

Find us on FacebookFollow us on Twitter 

4350 N. Fairfax Drive, Suite 510
Arlington, VA 22203, USA 
(703) 525-0111 (phone)