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June 7, 2013


The Science and Stewardship of Coast Hazards Response in Protected Areas, June 7, 2013 (Washington, D.C.). National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) scientists in conjunction with Congressman Sam Farr and responders will highlight how they access and interpret science to keep communities safe and commerce moving through a hypothetical California-based scenario impacting a National Marine Sanctuary, walking participants through each step of the response. The scenario will cover: oil spill response, marine debris tracking and removal, early Natural Resource Damage Assessment efforts, information management, and public involvement. There will be many opportunities for audience engagement and discussion.



North Pacific Fishery Management Council set to take final action on trawl fleet's king salmon bycatch limit at its June meeting. "The North Pacific Fishery Management Council's June agenda includes final action on a king salmon bycatch cap in the Gulf of Alaska non-pollock trawl fisheries, review of a plan to collect more information on Gulf trawl bycatch, and a discussion paper on bycatch management for the Gulf trawl fleet. The council began meeting in Juneau Wednesday. The meeting runs until June 11." Homer News 


Interior official hears wide range of views on oil drilling in Arctic. "Against the backdrop of Royal Dutch Shell's troubled 2012 attempt to drill in the Arctic Ocean, a top Interior official -- and former Alaskan -- heard the gamut of views 


Thursday about whether and how oil companies can safely drill offshore in the Alaska Arctic. No drilling at all, said the Sierra Club. Clear and consistent standards, said the oil companies and industry groups.Anchorage Daily News 


Listening sessions start process for Alaska-focused Arctic drilling rules. "Looking for lessons in Shell's disastrous campaign to drill offshore in the Arctic, the Interior Department on Thursday launched an effort to create special rules for oil and gas activity in federal waters off Alaska's coasts. Leading the hearing was a former Alaskan who's risen into the top echelons of the department. Tommy Beaudreau, an assistant secretary at Interior who overseas energy development in the U.S. offshore, said his years in Alaska have left him mindful of the promise of resource development and the dangers it presents." Alaska Dispatch 


Russian Arctic-mapping satellite malfunctions: Ifax. "A Russian satellite launched last year to map the Arctic has stopped working, a space industry source told the Interfax news agency on Thursday, in the latest disappointment for the country's once-pioneering space program. The orbiter, Zond-PP, was the first of five Earth-mapping satellites being developed by Russia. Launched in July 2012, it was expected to have a three-year life span." Yahoo News 


Why NATO isn't establishing an Arctic presence. "On May 6-7, NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen and ambassadors from the North Atlantic Council visited Bodø, Norway, where the Norwegian Armed Forces' operational command center is located. Rasmussen stated, 'At this present time, NATO has no intention of raising its presence and activities in the High North.'" Alaska Dispatch


Using salmon genome to adapt fish to warmer water. "Researchers are studying precociously mature dwarf males for ways to selectively breed farmed salmon that better withstand higher ocean temperatures. Warmer ocean temperatures resulting from climate change may lead to earlier sexual maturation in salmon - which could spell problems for the aquaculture industry. Now, the Institute of Marine Research is applying knowledge about the salmon genome in experiments to influence the onset of puberty in farmed salmon through selective breeding."  


Working Group of Indigenous Peoples Backs out of Barents Cooperation. "The Working Group of Indigenous Peoples in the Barents Region halts all activities due to lack of funding. The decision was taken one day after the Prime Ministers praised the Indigenous Peoples' work at the Barents Summit." Barents Observer 


More foreign Arctic research on Svalbard. "Several countries are stepping up their research activities in Ny-Ålesund on Svalbard. The Czech Republic is the eleventh country to open a research station, while Germany and France are the most active countries. Norway, on the other hand, is downsizing its activity in the research village on 79 degrees north." Barents Observer 


Aglukkaq sells vision of development-minded Arctic Council to business leaders in Ottawa. "Under Canada the Arctic Council plans to put economic development first, along with the needs of Arctic residents. 'The North is open for business. There are massive opportunities North of 60, in everything from natural resources to the service industry' was the message that Leona Aglukkaq, Canada's minister responsible for the Arctic Council, delivered June 5 during a speech to the Economic Club of Canada in Ottawa." Nunatsiaq Online 

Legislative Actionfutureevents  


The House Committee on Natural Resources' Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources held a subcommittee hearing on H.R. 2231, "The Offshore Energy and Jobs Act" yesterday, June 6. Watch yesterday's hearing  

Future Events


workshop for the revision of the 2004 Arctic Marine Strategic Plan; a AMSA II(C)/AMSA II(D)-PSSA bridging workshop; and an ecosystem Approach to Management workshop.


A Top of the World Conference, June 12-13 (Barrow, Alaska). The Alaska Arctic Policy Commission will meet in Barrow.  More information will be available on the new AAPC website: here.

White House Listening Session, June 14 (Anchorage, Alaska). 
Friday, June 14th from 2-5pm the following officials will hold an open listening session at UAA, Gorsuch Commons in Anchorage on the White House strategy as well as DOI's Integrated Arctic Management report released in April:
  • Brendan Kelly, Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP)
  • Nancy Sutley, Chair, White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ)
  • Dr. Cathy Sullivan, Acting NOAA Administrator
  • David Hayes, Deputy Secretary, Interior Department
  • David Balton, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Oceans and Fisheries, State Department
  • Tony Ceraolo, National Security Staff  

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.


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 for cargo airship services for customers in Alaska and other Northern area customers. Workshops will look at 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.


Community Oil Spill Response in Bering and Anadyr Straits, November 7-8, 2013 (Anchorage, Alaska). This workshop will bring together a diversity of 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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