The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation denied a climate change petition on Thursday submitted by a group of teens. The petition asked the state to reduce carbon emissions, monitor greenhouse gasses and come up with a long term climate change strategy.
The Senate Budget Committee today released the text of a fiscal 2018 budget resolution that would pave the way for a tax overhaul without Democratic votes. The 89-page legislative text includes reconciliation instructions that allow the Senate Finance Committee to add up to $1.5 trillion to the deficit over the next 10 years. The budget also includes instructions for the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee to save at least $1 billion over a decade. A vote is expected next week and the resolution is expected to be approved. Here is a summary of the resolution, and here are its tables and an explanation of how it enables tax reform.
Sea ice is sparse in Arctic waters off Alaska, and the implications for animals, upcoming winter weather and next year's ice pack are reported to be profound.
A lack of floating ice forced walruses to the shore of Alaska's Chukchi Sea earlier than any time on record. Perilous melt conditions forced biologists monitoring Alaska polar bears to cut short their spring field season. Other scientists sailing in the region marveled at the extraordinarily warm water temperatures. A ship, a Finnish icebreaker, made the earliest recorded vessel crossing of the once-impenetrable Northwest Passage, sailing from the Bering Strait to Greenland in July.
Dozens of walruses were found dead this week near the village of Point Lay on a barrier Arctic island that has emerged as a favored end-of-summer haulout for animals trying to survive without summer sea ice.
Federal wildlife officials suspect a stampede or stampedes. Many of the dead walruses were young animals more vulnerable to trampling. Officials hope to send a veterinarian to check the carcasses and learn more about what happened, said Andrea Medeiros, a spokesperson for U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
The small and sometimes patchy glaciers that cling to high mountain slopes in Alaska appear to be big players in groundwater and river systems far from the sea.
That is the conclusion of a University of Alaska Fairbanks-led study that traced the melt from one of those high-altitude glaciers to the groundwater that flows, ultimately, into a major Alaska river.