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June 11, 2013


Protection of the Arctic Marine Environment (PAME) Workshops, June 10-14, 2013 (Reykjavik, Iceland). PAME hosts 3 workshops: a scoping workshop for the revision of the 2004 Arctic Marine Strategic Plan; an AMSA II(C)/AMSA II(D)-PSSA bridging workshop; and an ecosystem Approach to Management workshop.

Arctic Council taking regional development reins. "At the Council's latest meeting in mid-May, in Kiruna, Sweden, ministers added new international observers, bolstered the Council's governance capacity and agreed on a common vision for the next 16 years, notes the IISS in a recent report."


Is a sleeping climate giant stirring in the Arctic? "Permafrost zones occupy nearly a quarter of the exposed land area of the Northern Hemisphere. NASA's Carbon in Arctic Reservoirs Vulnerability Experiment is probing deep into the frozen lands above the Arctic Circle in Alaska to measure emissions of the greenhouse gases - carbon dioxide and methane from thawing permafrost - signals that may hold a key to Earth's climate future."


Fisheries Council 'kicks the can' on Bering Sea conservation. "The North Pacific Fishery Management Council moved forward Monday with what it called a 'progressive step' in the issue of preserving the Bering Sea Canyons. The council heard public testimony that ended with a motion to further research steps to conserve the Bering Sea and its canyons, a motion most advocates for preservation called 'kicking the can' forward." Juneau Empire 


Finland inaugurates radio telescope in Arctic. "The largest radio telescope in Finland was formally inaugurated this past week at Kilpisjärvi in Finnish Lapland. Known as KAIRA (Kilpisjärvi Imaging Radio Receiver Array), it is a new generation radio observatory. Research targets include various layers of the Earth's atmosphere and space from near-Earth to deep space." Alaska Dispatch 


Will Tongass salmon find champions in Congress?  

"Environmental groups are hoping to give salmon - and the forest on which they rely - top priority in 77 key watersheds throughout the Tongass National Forest. The proposal, called Tongass 77, would ban activities that might harm salmon, such as logging, and has faced criticism from Southeast Alaska's struggling timber industry." Alaska Dispatch 


Opinion: Six Reasons Why Offshore Drilling in the Arctic Cannot Be Done Safely. "Even the best-prepared, best-equipped, and most technologically advanced oil company has no business drilling for oil in the Arctic. It is simply not possible to do it safely here." National Resources Defense Council


Opinion: A practical approach to Arctic sovereignty: Federal government must implement many overlapping responsibilities and obligations. "The only reasonable approach to Canada's northern development and Arctic sovereignty is to focus initial efforts on the Port of Churchill on the west coast of Hudson Bay, and secondarily on Rankin Inlet, which is further up the same coast. Attempts to support national security, aboriginal communities, scientific research, environmental protection and resource exploration by annual sealifts and air freight are not economically viable. Lower cost and greater frequency forms of logistics and operations are required to provide for a safe and prosperous northern future." Vancouver Sun

Legislative Actionfutureevents  


The House Committee on Natural Resources' Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources will continue a subcommittee hearing on H.R. 2231, "The Offshore Energy and Jobs Act" at 11 a.m., today. This bill would increase energy exploration and production on the Outer Continental Shelf, provide for equitable revenue sharing for all coastal States, and reorganize the Minerals Management Service into distinct and separate agencies. Webcast of the archived event will be available on the committee site.

Future Events


A Top of the World Conference, June 12-13 (Barrow, Alaska). The Alaska Arctic Policy Commission will meet in Barrow. Agenda items include the Indigenous Stakeholders Forum, remarks by Sens. Begich and Murkowski and Alaska Lt. Gov. Treadwell, and an update on the National Strategy for the Arctic Region. You can view this Conference through the web-stream at or listen by phone at (855) 463-5009.

**New This Week** 
White House Roundtable Discussion with Federal Government Officials, National Strategy for the Arctic Region, June 14 (Gorsuch Commons #107, Univ. of Alaska Anchorage, 2:00-5:00 pm).
"On May 10, 2013, the FranUlmer President
signed the National Strategy for the Arctic Region. At that time - recognizing that successful implementation of the National Strategy will depend upon productive collegial engagement with Alaska Natives, the State of Alaska, Members of Alaska's congressional delegation, and other key stakeholders - the White House announced that it would host initial meetings in Alaska in June to discuss how best to move forward. Please join us for a roundtable moderated by Fran Ulmer, Chair of the US Arctic Research Commission." 

Participants include:
  • Nancy Sutley (Chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality)
  • Kathy Sullivan (Acting Administrator, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)
  • David Hayes (Deputy Secretary of the Interior)
  • Tommy P. Beaudreau (Director, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management)
  • Rear Admiral Thomas Ostebo (U.S. Coast Guard)
  • Ambassador David Balton (Department of State)
  • Tony Ceraolo (Director, Maritime Security & Director, Arctic Region Policy, National Security Staff)
  • Brendan P. Kelly (Assist. Director, Polar Science, Office of Science & Technology Policy, EOP)


For further information, please contact:

Brendan P. Kelly                                           Fran Ulmer               or        



**New This Week** NOAA Arctic Science Days, June 19-20, 2013, 1-5 p.m. (Silver Spring, MD). "The NOAA Arctic Task Force will be hosting Arctic Science days for two afternoons to learn about the range of activities NOAA has going on in the Arctic region. These two afternoon sessions will be framed around the six goals laid out in NOAA's Arctic Vision and Strategy. On Wednesday, we will cover sea ice and weather prediction, as well as basic scientific research. Thursday will focus on partnerships, stewardship, as well as navigation and emergency response." Location: Silver Spring Metro Center, Building 31315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD, 20910, Room 12836. Remote webinar access will be made available for this event.

AGU Science Policy Conference, June 24-26, 2013 (Washington, DC).   AGU logo

"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. See the 6/25 forum titled 'US Government Investment in Arctic Change Research.' The event is hosted by American Geophysical Union (AGU), a Washington, D.C.-based international nonprofit scientific association." The USARC is a co-sponsor of the Arctic forum, through ARCUS.


3rd Cargo Airships for Northern Operations Workshop, July 10-12, 2013 (Anchorage, Alaska). "The 3rd Airship Workshop will follow up the achievements of last year's workshop by focusing on potential approaches and actions that would facilitate establishing strong cargo airship business commitments to serving customers in Alaska and other Northern areas. Workshops will consider specific actions that may be initiated."

The U.S. National/Naval Ice Center (NIC) and the U.S. Arctic Research Commission (USARC) will 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.

101st Meeting of the US Arctic Research Commission, August 26-27, 2013 (Dutch Harbor/Unalaska, Alaska). The 101st meeting of the US Arctic Research Commission will be held in Dutch Harbor/Unalaska. The meeting agenda will be posted on the USARC website,, closer to the meeting date. 


7th International Workshop on Ice-Drilling Technology, September 9-13, 2013 (Madison, WI). "The event is sponsored by the Ice Drilling Program Office- Ice Drilling Design and Operations (IDPO-IDDO), International Partnerships in Ice Core Sciences (IPICS), International Glaciological Society (IGS). Following in the footsteps of the six previous ice drilling technology workshops held between 1974 and 2006, the Seventh International workship on Ice Drilling Technology will take a comprehensive look a the latest innovations in ice drilling technology, including ice coring, borehole logging, subglacial sampling, core logging and handling, and field logistics."


Arctic Exchange, September 16-17, 2013 (Stockholm). "The Exchange brings an evolutionary concept in networking and business information delivery. The concept is designed to meet specific business objectives during  two days for promoting cooperation, coordination, and interaction among the Arctic communities addressing key issues such as sustainable business development and regional protection. As more and more data has confirmed that the Arctic is extremely rich in oil and gas reserves, locations such as Greenland and the Barents Sea have seen a huge growth in interest from the hydrocarbon industry. Despite the opportunities offered, there are many challenges that may hinder operations. The presence of cold temperatures, ice and a lack of infrastructure pose logistical problems that make exploration expensive and risky."


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."


Workshop: Community Oil Spill Response in Bering and Anadyr Straits, November 7-8, 2013 (Anchorage, Alaska). "This workshop will bring together diverse stakeholders to learn more about and respond to community desires to be part of oil spill first-response efforts that help protect food security and other local resources; come to agreement on the multiple roles local community members can play in responding to oil spills; and create an action plan for moving forward on this topic. The workshop is sponsored by the Wildlife Conservation Society." 


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 scientific research and 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."


International Congress of Arctic Social Sciences, May 22-26, 2014 (Prince George, British Columbia). "The International Arctic Social Sciences Association (IASSA) announces the 8th International Congress of Arctic Social Sciences (ICASS VIII).  ICASS is held every three years, bringing together people from all over the world to share ideas about social science research in the Arctic. ICASS VII, held in Akureyri in June 2011, attracted 450 participants from 30 different countries.  ICASS VIII's theme is Northern Sustainabilities. By using the plural, we underscore both that "sustainability" has social, cultural, economic, political and environmental dimensions, and that definitions of the concept vary."


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