Elizabeth Jenkins, Alaska's Energy Desk - Juneau


Forest Service substantially weighed the ‘state’s preferences’ in Roadless Rule decision

A change in the federal rule could open up over 9 million acres in the nation’s largest national forest, though the federal agency says those lands “would not be scheduled or expected to be subject to timber harvests.”

Forest Service recommends lifting Roadless Rule for the Tongass

Alaska’s congressional delegation has long pushed for the full exemption in the state — saying there needs to be more access to timber and energy opportunities in the region.

A tiny insect is causing major tree damage in Southeast Alaska. Scientists hope it’s a blip.

Bug scientists think drought conditions played a major role in a recent hemlock sawfly outbreak.

Climate change is causing yellow cedar decline. But not enough for ESA listing.

So far, about a million acres of trees have died from Alaska to California. An Endangered Species Act listing would have made it difficult to log the tree.
A path through trees.

Records show federal government, tasked with rewriting Tongass rules, also funded Alaska timber group

The State of Alaska was granted millions of dollars in federal funds to help facilitate dialogue about potential changes to the Roadless Rule. Some of that money went to timber industry groups — and environmentalists say that's not fair.

Alaska’s sales pitch: Vast resources and a melting Arctic

It was the first time the annual meeting has been held in the United States, and it offered a unique chance for the state to pitch itself as a great investment opportunity to wealth managers from across the globe.
A mossy spruce forest

Is the USDA now leaning toward a full exemption of the Roadless Rule in Alaska?

A national news story caused a stir this week, suggesting President Donald Trump has taken a special interest in how the Tongass will be managed.

Could climate change research in Alaska be put on ice?

The University of Alaska system is known as a leader in climate change research, studying melting permafrost to shrinking glaciers. But there’s growing uncertainty about the future of such projects with steep cuts to state funding.

How hospital ERs in Alaska are helping patients with opioid use disorder

A trip to the emergency room can be a crucial window to assist people in their recovery. Now some providers are giving patients a medicine to ease the transition so they can seek additional care. Recently, a hospital in Juneau completed one year of this program with encouraging results.

Alaska schools now have more guidance on how to teach science in the classroom

The Alaska State Board of Education unanimously approved new science standards on Friday, which are more detailed about topics like climate change and evolution than standards previously recommended for schools.

AK: Meet the Juneau couple who brush their teeth next to history

The Last Chance Mining Museum is celebrating 25 years of continuous operation. But for the Juneau couple who lives there, it’s been a permanent residence for longer than that.

This ice cream stand was constructed out of local wood. Here’s why that’s unique.

There are still questions about how to make the young growth timber industry viable in Southeast Alaska. But some customers are seeking out the material.

Climate change looks different in Southeast Alaska. Here’s how tribes are planning for that.

The Central Council of the Tlingit & Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska has a climate change adaptation plan. It wants the region to be included in the climate change discussion.

Two of Alaska’s biggest exports are caught up in the US-China trade dispute

As President Donald Trump’s trade dispute with China continues to drag out, some of Alaska’s biggest exports expect to be hit with even steeper tariffs than they’ve seen in recent months.

As the Lower 48 continues to dry out, Alaska could get wetter

This past winter, parts of Southeast Alaska experienced severe drought. But a new study published in the journal Nature suggests that’s probably not a preview of what’s to come in Alaska.

New legislation introduced in Congress aims to strengthen Roadless Rule

Under the proposed Roadless Area Conservation Act, the U.S. Department of Agriculture wouldn’t have the authority to grant an Alaska-specific exemption to the Roadless Rule.

Before, some teens in crisis had to leave their families in Juneau to get help. That’s changing.

Since January, Southeast Alaska’s largest hospital has quietly rolled out a new program to close a big gap in behavioral health services for minors. So far, it's provided care to more than a dozen young people in the midst of a crisis.

Caring for Alaska’s seniors during tense budget talks

Gov. Mike Dunleavy’s budget proposes eliminating more than a third of the state’s funding for Medicaid. To achieve that, some hospitals and nursing homes could be paid less to provide skilled labor.

Southeast Alaska researchers get rare opportunity to study a sperm whale

The species has been spotted in the Inside Passage before. But sightings are infrequent. A whale found recently near Juneau is thought to have died from a vessel strike.

Will Alaska endorse climate science education?

Alaska could be joining dozens of other states by adopting the framework of Next Generation Science Standards. On Friday, the State Board of Education unanimously approved a draft slated for public comment.