Kavitha George, Alaska Public Media - Anchorage

Kavitha George, Alaska Public Media - Anchorage
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Kavitha George is Alaska Public Media’s climate change reporter. Reach her at kgeorge@alaskapublic.org. Read more about Kavitha here.

With a Railbelt natural gas crunch looming, the legislative session had a special focus on energy bills

State lawmakers passed several energy bills this session aimed at updating the Railbelt’s electrical grid and speeding up the transition to renewable energy.
A man in winter clothes stands over a sled filled with scientific instrumentation.

A sea ice monitoring project is a climate adaptation tool for Utqiaġvik whalers

The project partners Western science and Indigenous knowledge to help the community prepare amid declining sea ice.  
solar panels

A bill to support community solar projects in Alaska appears close to becoming law

Community solar projects are small-scale solar farms that local ratepayers can buy into, in exchange for lower electricity bills.
A man in a black hoodie and black rubber gloves cuts through marbled bowhead whale meat with a knife.

For one Utqiaġvik family, spring bowhead whaling marks an important milestone

The Aaluk Crew landed Utqiaġvik's first bowhead whale of the spring season last week. It was also 17-year-old striker Donald "Button" Adams' first catch.
A RIVER CUTS THROUGH TUNDRA

Biden administration blocks Ambler Road, strengthens protections for NPR-A

Both Alaska senators, Republicans Dan Sullivan and Lisa Murkowski, expressed outrage even before the decisions were formally announced.
Four caribou swim across a calm river with yellow grasses, trees and mountains in the background.

With a decision on Ambler looming, the Kobuk River makes a list of endangered rivers

Advocates say the Ambler Road and mining projects risk contaminating the Kobuk River watershed and hurting the region’s subsistence species.
Two men in suits break an ice sculpture with an ice pick

Homeland Security funds new Arctic security research center at UAA

The Arctic Domain Awareness Center will receive $46 million to study Arctic geopolitics, commerce, food security and climate change. 
Solar panels stretching off into the distance connected by electrical wire.

Railbelt electric utilities are facing a major energy crunch. Renewables may be the answer.

The region’s electric grid needs to find a replacement for Cook Inlet natural gas. One study suggests over the long term, the cheapest option is to ramp up renewable energy. 
A man on a ladder installs a piece of equipment on the upper part of a wall.

Alaska creates climate plan to reduce statewide emissions and fund a wide range of sustainable energy projects

The state identified almost a billion dollars in need for projects that would help lower energy costs for an EPA grant program. 
Spruce trees dot an otherwise tree-less tundra landscape.

Trees are expanding north in Alaska’s Arctic as a result of sea ice loss

Large areas of open ocean are driving heavy snowfall in the Arctic, which protects trees from harsh northern conditions. 
Massive industrial conveyor belt and loading equipment on a dock in a cloudy harbor.

Coal loading equipment in Seward is set to be demolished, likely a permanent end to Alaska coal exports

The Seward coal loading dock has sat idle since 2016 after demand for Alaska coal exports collapsed, one sign of the global energy transition. 
Cook Inlet

Alaska Gov. Dunleavy’s plan to lease land for carbon storage comes with questions

Analysts say estimates that the state could earn hundreds millions from leases are overpromising.
Emergency first responders stand in a snowy pullout next to emergency vehicles at dusk. Snow covered mountains in the background.

Avalanche near Cooper Landing kills 28-year-old skier

Recent high winds and rapidly changing weather in Southcentral increase the potential for avalanches in the backcountry.
Gloved hands holding a bunch of mussels

Scientists investigate paralytic shellfish poisoning as possible factor in large marine die offs 

Recent testing data from Knik Tribe scientists show paralytic shellfish toxin throughout the food web
A small brown tundra vole sits in a pair of human hands.

Alaska’s Arctic and boreal ecosystems see climate change-driven ‘microbial awakening’

Permafrost thaw is creating opportunities for fungi and bacteria to thrive, transforming northern food webs, according to a new study.
Rows of solar panels stretching off into the distance.

Chugach Electric offers its support for renewable energy benchmarks

A renewable portfolio standard would require Railbelt utilities to ramp up renewables. Chugach is the first Railbelt utility to publicly back it.
an excavator

Funding to address rural Alaska climate change falls $80M short, report says

The Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium's report details how federal and state agencies can work together to protect rural infrastructure.
Solar panels stretching off into the distance connected by electrical wire.

Alaska lawmakers eye bills on neighborhood solar, green bank and renewable energy benchmarks

There are at least three bills to watch this coming legislative session that are aimed at growing Alaska’s renewable energy production.
Museum-goers and listen to audio and look at a collection of photos on a red wall.

Anchorage Museum exhibit explores climate change through resilience and care

“How to Survive” uses works from Alaska and beyond to highlight how investing in community and caring can be forms of climate mitigation.
A picture of a downtown skyline while it's snowing.

Anchorage used to have an active climate action plan. What happened to it? 

Under Mayor Dave Bronson, the city missed its 2023 annual report, and a link to the plan has been removed from the city website.