Arctic Update Header
May 3, 2013


The House and Senate are in recess this week. 


Salmon Scientists Divided Over Threat to Pacific Northwest Salmon. Like mariners scanning the horizon from the crow's nest, scientists have for years been on the lookout in the Pacific Northwest for signs that a dreaded salmon-killing disease, scourge to farmed salmon in other parts of the world, has arrived here, threatening some of the world's richest wild salmon habitats. Most say there is no evidence. But for years, a biologist in Canada named Alexandra Morton - regarded by some as a visionary Cassandra, by others as a misguided prophet of doom - has said definitively and unquestionably that they are wrong. Wild Pacific salmon, she has said, are testing positive for a European strain of the virus that causes the disease, infectious salmon anemia, or I.S.A. New York Times


Independent Science Panels on Proposed Pebble Mine Set. Pebble stakeholders and interested parties, space is filling up for The Keystone Center's May 6-7 Independent Science Panels on the proposed Pebble mine. New information has been posted to our website including names and biographies of the independent scientists and the agenda. The panels will address wetlands, vegetation, wildlife, and threatened and endangered species. The panels will be held in the Consortium Library on the University of Alaska Anchorage campus and will be open to the public. They will also be filmed by 360 North for Alaska Public Television and broadcast live via web-stream on Keystone's website. Anchorage Daily News 


AK Native family drawing Placing American Indian and Alaska Native Boys and Men Health Disparities on the Map. A group of stakeholders dedicated to raising awareness on health disparities among American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) males has collaborated with Men's Health Network (MHN) and the Office of Minority Health to develop a brief report titled: A Vision of Wellness and Health Equity for AI/AN Boys and Men. Among American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/AN), males experience alarming rates of illness and disease compared to their female counterparts and those often exceed rates for all other U.S. racial and ethnic groups. Unfortunately these health disparities among AI/AN males are probably worsening. Based on data compiled by the Indian Health Service (IHS), for some age groups AI/AN males experience death rates 200 to 500 percent greater than AI/AN females for suicide, HIV/AIDS, homicide, unintentional injuries, diabetes, firearm injury, and alcohol-related deaths and 10 to 50 percent higher than AI/AN females from cancer, heart disease, and liver disease. Digital Journal 


White House Warned on Imminent Arctic Ice Death Spiral. Senior US government officials are to be briefed at the White House this week on the danger of an ice-free Arctic in the summer within two years. The meeting is bringing together NASA's acting chief scientist, Gale Allen, the director of the US National Science Foundation, Cora Marett, as well as representatives from the US Department of Homeland Security and the Pentagon. Guardian 


Preserving the Health of the Arctic Lars-Otto Reiersen is a marine biologist by training, now working as an environmental scientist in Norway. He has led the Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP) for over two decades. AMAP advises the governments of eight Arctic countries on issues relating to threats to the region from pollution. As a native of Troms