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May 8, 2012


Today's Eventstodaysevents 



Today at a Glance: May 8, 2012. The House and Senate conferees on federal highway programs will meet for the first time. The full House will consider its first appropriations bill of the year-Commerce, Justice and Science. Two House Appropriations Committee subcommittees will mark up draft bills-Defense and Military Construction.






UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Peoples Meets on Land Rights, Food Security. This week and next, 500 representatives from the 370-million indigenous peoples who live around the world are meeting in New York at the United Nations for the 11th session of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Peoples. The forum, which meets for 10 days each year, is a high-level advisory body that deals with indigenous issues related to economic and social development, culture, environment, education, health and human rights. Nunatsiaq Online


Ottawa Experiences The Winter That Wasn't, Environment Canada Confirms. It's official - the winter of 2011-12 was the warmest Ottawa has ever seen. Environment Canada senior climatologist David Phillips said Monday that for the period of November through March - not the official winter but the "real" winter Ottawans experience - the average temperature was -1.3 degrees C. Normal would be -5.3. In records that go back to 1889, there's never been a winter like it. The winter of 2001-02, which had an average temperature of -1.7, had been the champ until now. Ottawa Citizen


PutinRussian Navy Development in Arctic, Far East Authorized: Newly Re-installed President Putin Orders Russian Navy Expansion in the Far East & Arctic Zones. Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the government to ensure the development of the Navy, first of all, in the Far East and Arctic zones, the Kremlin press service reported. He also ordered providing the Armed Forces with modern weaponry systems, increasing their share to 70 percent by 2020. Putin, who was sworn in as Russian president recently, also instructed the government to draft proposals on creating federal executive agencies, which will be responsible for the placement and implementation of state defense orders. Marine Link  


More Data on Arctic Waters. Navigational charts and information about known hazards in Arctic waters are to be beefed up in the wake of a Transportation Safety Board report on the circumstances of a ship's grounding in Nunavut almost two years ago. The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) released its report on the August 2010 grounding of the Clipper Adventurer. The cruise ship ran aground on a shoal in the Coronation Gulf on Aug. 27, 2010 while travelling to Kugluktuk from Port Epworth, carrying 128 passengers and 69 crew. Efforts by the crew to dislodge the vessel during high tide the next day proved unsuccessful. The ship was freed on Sept. 14 and eventually towed to Cambridge Bay. The 27-page document released April 26 shows the ship ran aground on a shoal previously discovered by the Canadian Coast Guard vessel Sir Wilfrid Laurier in 2007 while conducting scientific research. The Clipper Adventurer was not advised of a possible shoal in that location, however, as it was not marked on navigational charts, according to the board. Northern News Service


defense spendingCanadian National Defense Sticks to Sovereignty Guns. The Department of National Defence says a downgrade of the scale of the Nanisivik Naval Facility does not mean the Canadian government is giving up on Arctic sovereignty. "The additional knowledge gained since the original announcement of the project helped determine the best possible balance between the cost for Canadian taxpayers and our commitment to Arctic sovereignty," DND communication advisor Mike Graham stated in an e-mail, noting the government is increasing its commitment in the North through various other departments. "We have established two new satellite ground stations in the Arctic, we are establishing a new Arctic training centre for the Canadian Armed Forces at Resolute Bay, there is a new army reserve company in Yellowknife and we are increasing the size of the Canadian Rangers to a total of 5,000 members," Graham stated. Northern News Service 


Military Exercises in Arctic Reveal Gap in US Capabilities. The Canadian Forces have just commenced one of their annual sovereignty exercises in the Arctic, called Operation Nunalivut. One-hundred fifty Canadian Forces personnel from the Navy, Air Force, Army, and Canadian Rangers are participating. This year, the exercises are taking place around Cornwallis Island and on the western portion of Devon Island in Nunavut. Sovereignty and search and rescue (SAR) training compose a large portion of the operations this year. Royal Canadian Navy divers dove under six feet of ice in Gascoyne Bay to simulate a medical rescue. Alaska Dispatch 


NOAANOAA to Hold Public Meeting in Anchorage. Navigation areas of focus for this public meeting include: NOAA's charting and hydrographic surveying products, services and information for the Alaska/Arctic region; and NOAA's geospatial, tide and currents products, services and information. Maritime transportation representatives presenting at the HSRP Anchorage meeting include: the Marine Exchange of Alaska, Crowley Towing, VITUS Marine, Alaska Marine Highway System, Alaska State Digital Mapping Program; as well as, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Coast Guard, Homeland Security, and the University of Alaska. Marine Link  

Legislative Actionfutureevents  


No Arctic legislation was formally considered Friday.

Future Events               


NOAA's Hydrographic Services Review Panel meeting, May 22-24, 2012 in Anchorage, Alaska. This federal advisory committee will discuss improvements of navigation services that NOAA provides for Alaska and the Arctic. Topics include new nautical charts and navigation safety, emerging commercial shipping needs, accuracy of land elevation data for coastal management, and natural hazard warning and response for the Alaska/Arctic region. The public is invited, and can provide comments during the May 23 and 24 afternoon sessions. For more information, click here.


The Tenth International Conference on Permafrost, June 2012. The conference will be held in Tyumen, Russia, and is organized and hosted by Russia. The last conference was held in Fairbanks, Alaska, in 2008. Click here.  


15th International Congress on Circumpolar Health, August 5-10, 2012. This event is sponsored by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Society for Circumpolar Health, and the International Union for Circumpolar Health.  The forum will consider community participatory research and healthmeetinglogoindigenous research; women's health, family health, and well-being; food security and nutrition; social determinants of health; environmental and occupational health; infectious and chronic diseases; climate change health impacts; health service delivery and infrastructure; and behavioral health. Click here


The Arctic Imperative Summit, August 24-28, 2012. The summit will be hosted by Alaska Dispatch and will bring together leading voices in this conversation, including residents from the small villages that comprise Alaska's coastal communities, state, national and international leaders, the heads of shipping and industry, as well as international policymakers and the news media. The goal of the summit is to sharpen the focus on the policy and investment needs of Alaska's Arctic through a series of high level meetings, presentations, investor roundtables and original research. Click here


Arctic/Inuit/Connections: Learning from the Top of the World , October 24-28, 2012.  The 18th Inuit Studies Conference, hosted by the Smithsonian Institution, will be held in Washington, DC. The conference will consider heritage inuitconferencelogomuseums and the North; globalization: an Arctic story; power, governance and politics in the North; the '"new" Arctic: social, cultural and climate change; and Inuit education, health, language, and literature. For more information, click here. 





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