The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is forecasting a harvest of 28 million pinks in the region next summer. This year’s catch wound up at 8.1 million pinks, roughly the same harvest as two years ago.
Not only were fishermen catching fewer fish, in many cases they were getting paid less for them. Processors faced steep bills for implementing COVID mitigation strategies, and the value of sockeye was the lowest it’s been in more than 10 years.
Text messages and meeting notes show that behind the scenes, leaders of the Alaska Department of Natural Resources have been collaborating with Pebble to create the final piece of Pebble’s application.
The COVID-19 pandemic came at a rough time for Alaska. The state was just beginning to climb out of its recession and was projected to see economic growth. Instead, as the pandemic unfolded and shut down the tourism season, businesses closed and a record number of Alaskans found themselves out of work.
Scientists say pollock can migrate much further north and stay there for longer as winters warm and sea ice melts.
The Marine Mammal Commission estimated that 1,300 belugas were in Cook Inlet in 1972. Now there are fewer than 269 whales left.
Environmental groups have expressed concern that the Navy does not do enough to mitigate its impact on marine life, from whales and porpoises down to zooplankton.
Adjusted for inflation, the initial salmon fishery value for 2020 is the lowest since 2006.
The court is still allowing thousands of engineered fish raised in tanks in the Midwest to reach American consumers by the end of the year.
Science teacher Steven Gregory tells his fisheries students that they are “the stewards of the river.”