As a regional hub for 10 remote villages about 30 miles above the Arctic Circle, Kotzebue is where Obama came closest to actually seeing the communities he’s touted throughout his trip as being imperiled by climate change.
The federal government is tapping the Denali Commission as the lead agency to address the relocation of coastal communities across the state.
The letter covers a lot of ground — outlining the need to develop a deep-draft port above the Arctic Circle and advocating sharing federal revenue from offshore oil drilling with local residents.
Everyone from fishermen to local leaders are getting ready for the president’s visit — and have their own hopes for what he takes away.
Nobody seems totally happy with the president’s speech on climate change: too vague, too bleak, goes too far, doesn’t go far enough.
Obama proposed to speed up construction of a heavy icebreaker by two years. He wants the new ship to be polar-ready by the year 2020, rather than 2022.
Aside from a lack of routing measures, the Bering Sea’s nautical charts are outdated, presenting serious safety risks to vessels of all kinds.
President Barack Obama met with leaders from the Alaska Native community while in Anchorage for the GLACIER conference.
Obama also wants to work with Congress to plan for an expanded icebreaker fleet, “To ensure the United States can operate year-round in the Arctic Ocean,” he said.
As President Obama continues touring Alaska, the aims and outcomes of Monday’s GLACIER Conference are still being sorted out.