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#02-26-2014 - ComFish News Roundup

Feds to Alaskans: No road for humans, lots of land for animals
Meeting the Alaska Ferry at King Cove
Meeting the Alaska Ferry at King Cove
(Photo credit: J. Stephen Conn)
By Barnini Chakraborty
Published February 26, 2014
In one of Alaska's most remote outposts, where a thousand hardy souls make their homes, the Obama administration has put the fate of birds and bears above the lives of people, blocking construction of an 11-mile gravel trail connecting a tiny fishing hamlet to a life-saving airport. For more than three decades the predominantly Aleut fishing community of King Cove has been fighting to build a one-lane,gravel track connecting the Cove to the nearby hamlet of Cold Bay. What they have gotten is 30 years of....
Pebble Mine Opponents Urge EPA To Kill Project
By Liz Ruskin, APRN - Washington DC | February 25, 2014 - 5:20 pm
About 30 opponents of the proposed Pebble Mine met in Washington today with White House and high-ranking EPA staff. They came armed with a new EPA study that found a mine of Pebble’s size would pose a significant risk to Bristol Bay and its valuable salmon fisheries. Now they’re asking the Environment agency to take the next step and kill the project. They didn’t get a definite answer.....

3:42 PM TUE FEBRUARY 25, 2014
Bristol Bay Forever Initiative Survives Challenge in Court
A lawsuit filed by pro-mining groups unsuccessfully challenged the constitutionality of the initiative scheduled to go before the voters in August....

Council to Voice Support for Keeping P/V Stimson in Unalaska
By Annie Ropeik
Tuesday, February 25 2014
City Council is set to ask the state to tear down the derelict torpedo building and allow the trooper vessel Stimson to stay in Unalaska at their meeting tonight. The first resolution up for a vote shows support for keeping the Stimson homeported here. The state is considering moving the patrol vessel to Kodiak, where it would still...

Judge hears arguments over Juneau cruise ship docks
By Casey Kelly
Posted on February 25, 2014 at 6:00 am
The ongoing dispute between the Alaska Commercial Fishermen’s Memorial and the City and Borough of Juneau continued in court on Monday. Juneau Superior Court Judge Louis Menendez heard arguments over whether to block the city from moving forward with a massive cruise ship dock project in front of the memorial. Bruce Weyhrauch, an attorney and president of the Fishermen’s Memorial board of directors, argued the city should be barred from hiring a contractor or paying money for the two floating....

Pursuing alternative energy options is critical for Western Alaska
George Guy
February 25, 2014
No one understands the staggering cost of energy, the importance of subsistence, and the need for community sustainability better than residents in rural Alaska. Because the cost of energy impacts the way we are able to provide services and do business in Western Alaska, several regional organizations in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta came together to create a non-profit utility, Nuvista Light and Electric Cooperative. The organization is not a subsidiary of Calista. In 2011, under the continued guidance of the board of directors and through a legislative....

Whales, ships more common through Bering Strait
February 26, 2014
The Arctic is home to a growing number of whales and ships, and to populations of sub-Arctic whales that are expanding their territory into newly ice-free Arctic waters. A study of the narrow passage of the Bering Strait uses underwater microphones to track the whales by their sounds. Three years of recordings reveal more detections of....

The Race for Arctic Oil: Advantage Russia vs. U.S.
The Fiscal Times
February 25, 2014
The United States and Russia are at odds over a host of issues, from Ukraine to Syria to Edward Snowden, prompting talks of a new Cold War. Their next confrontation could take place on the coldest place on earth. Last week, a Russian military official told Russian media that the Kremlin was forming a new strategic military command to protect its interests in the Arctic. It’s part of a broader push from Moscow to establish military superiority at the top of the world. “The new command will comprise the Northern Fleet, Arctic warfare brigades, air force and air defense units as well as additional administrative structures,” a source in Russia’s General Staff told RIA Novosti last Monday, The formation of the new command follows a December 2013 order from Russian President Vladimir Putin to ramp up Russia’s military presence in the Arctic. Putin said Russia was returning to the Arctic and “intensifying the development of this promising.....

There’s Much to Consider When Seeking Out Sustainable Seafood
By Glenn Hasek
February, 25 2014
Green Lodging News
Almost exactly a year ago, McDonald’s USA announced it would become the first national restaurant chain to adopt the Marine Stewardship Council’s (MSC) blue ecolabel on its fish packaging in restaurants in the United States. McDonald’s made a similar commitment in Europe in 2011. McDonald’s decision has had significant impact on the fishing industry; more than 14,000 McDonald’s restaurants across the United States have met the MSC Chain of Custody standard for traceability, which is the ability to track the fish all the way back through the supply chain to the fishery.....

February 26, 2014
Status quo reigns with fish council
By Sean Horgan
Staff Writer
DANVERS — Tuesday morning had morphed into afternoon and then on toward the evening — not that anybody attending the New England Fisheries Management Council meeting inside the artificial gloaming of the DoubleTree Hotel’s grand ballroom had the slightest idea of what time it was. In that regard, the ballroom was like a Las Vegas casino, where the world barely intruded and everybody kept playing until....

Editorial: NOAA's monitor coverage only fair
It is, as our federal lawmakers all noted, good news to learn that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s fisheries service will cover the cost of the on-board monitors who now regularly keep tabs on the catches hauled in by fishermen by joining them on their trips.....

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