Nathaniel Herz, Alaska Public Media

Nathaniel Herz, Alaska Public Media
Nathaniel Herz is an Anchorage-based journalist. He's been a reporter in Alaska for a decade, and is currently reporting for Alaska Public Media. Find more of his work by subscribing to his newsletter, Northern Journal, at Reach him at
a jackup rig in the water

Some Cook Inlet oil platforms have sat unused for years. This reporter decided to find out why.

There are six offshore platforms in Cook Inlet that haven't pumped oil in years, including one that has sat unused since 1992.
an oil and gas platform in the water

This oil platform stopped pumping 30 years ago. Alaska still won’t make the owner tear it down.

Owners can put off the costly process of tearing down the platforms using a strategy one critic calls “delay, deny and diddle around.” And in Alaska, the state has let them do it — for decades.
two men at a meeting table

An appraiser told Anchorage its property was worth $3M. The city sold it to the former mayor for $2M.

The municipal board that approved the sale — and a below-market lease — includes two members with ties to former mayor and former U.S. Sen. Mark Begich.

Olympians-turned-volunteers power elite cross-country ski races in Anchorage

The elite-level SuperTour stops in Anchorage this week, with some of the continent’s best cross-country skiers competing.
two people on a boat, with a fishing net

Tesla needs graphite. Alaska has plenty. But mining it raises fears in nearby villages.

Graphite is a critical ingredient in the batteries needed to power America’s electric vehicle revolution. But every ounce of it is imported. A proposed mine in a remote part of Alaska would change that. But some of the people who live nearby fear it will endanger their way of life.
a man speaks to a camera

Video raises new questions about governor’s oversight of aide

Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy’s pro-family policy adviser made controversial comments about abortion in his role as an aide to the governor.
man in suit jacket looks at camera in crowded room

Alaska Gov. Dunleavy’s policy adviser who said ‘divorce is worse than rape’ resigns

Jeremy Cubas made $110,000 a year as Gov. Dunleavy’s pro-family policy adviser. On his podcast, Cubas defended Hitler, used racist slurs and said a man raping his wife is "an impossible act.”
A black and white photo of a man pointing to a map.

Unsettled: A podcast examining the legacy of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act

Fifty years ago, U.S. Congress passed legislation that permanently terminated Alaska Natives' land claims. On its anniversary, Alaska Public Media and the Anchorage Daily News, with Indigenous leaders from around the state as guests, examine the legacy of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act and its impacts on subsistence, culture and the state's economy.

Profits eluded Sealaska for decades. Now it’s ditching timber and plastics, and investing in kelp.

An investment in Barnacle Foods, while small, is a potent symbol of the corporation’s new vision. Other corporations are taking similar steps.  

ANCSA made only Natives born before December 1971 corporate shareholders. Those born after want change.

Shares mean dividends, identity and a say in what corporations do. Many Alaska Natives under 50 are waiting to be included. 

Proposed Ambler project underscores promise and peril of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act

Ambivalence about the Ambler road and mine projects extends across the Upper Kobuk River region, where jobs could support subsistence but development could jeopardize it. 
A large red hangar building with some vehicles outtside in a snowy, mountainous lanscape

Many see Red Dog as an ANCSA success story. What happens when the ore runs out?

The mine has brought wealth to Northwest Alaska, supporting Alaska Native communities and culture. But its relationship with the only village downstream is fraught, and the mine is running out of ore.
A community on the edge of a frozen ocean.

A historic settlement turns 50, but questions linger over whether it was fair

While the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act created monetary wealth for Alaska Native shareholders, it also came at a huge cost.

Clem Tillion, Alaska’s original ‘fish czar,’ dies at 96

A towering figure in the worlds of Alaska fisheries and politics — and in the intersection between the two — Tillion, 96, died Wednesday morning at his home in Halibut Cove.

Alaska reports record 1,330 new COVID cases and 7 deaths

Alaska on Thursday reported another daily record for new coronavirus cases, and it also recorded seven new deaths and a nearly 5% jump in hospitalizations as the state contends with its worst COVID-19 surge so far.
an entrance sign to Providence Alaska Medical Center with arrows pointing to various buildings

Alaska’s COVID hospitalizations still climbing, 1 in 5 patients now fighting virus

Alaska’s already overwhelmed hospitals took on another 20 patients with COVID-19 over the Labor Day long weekend, with more than 180 people hospitalized with the virus.

Mass testing can keep COVID out of schools. But none of Alaska’s largest districts are doing it.

A few small districts have instituted mass screening testing programs, to pick up COVID-19 cases in people without symptoms. But Anchorage, Fairbanks, the Kenai Peninsula and Mat-Su districts have not followed suit.
A four story concrete building

Alaska News Nightly: Monday, September 6, 2021

Stories are posted on the statewide news page. Send news tips, questions, and comments to Follow Alaska Public Media on Facebook and on Twitter @AKPublicNews. And subscribe to the Alaska News Nightly podcast.  Monday on Alaska News Nightly: Waiting to...

A new $350 million Bering Sea fish fight could hinge on a miniature Canadian railroad

The quickly escalating saga involves Donald Trump’s personal lawyer. And it stems from the way that one of Alaska’s biggest fishing companies, American Seafoods, is using an exemption in the federal law that typically allows only U.S. ships to move cargo between U.S. ports.