Arctic Daily Update: April 24, 2013
The Senate will consider legislation on interstate sales tax collection and a judicial nomination. The House will consider health care legislation.
Sustainable Ocean Summit (SOS 2013), April 22-24, 2013 (Washington, D.C.)Sponsored by the World Ocean Council, SOS 2013 is designed to bring together a diverse range of ocean industries: shipping, oil and gas, fisheries, aquaculture, tourism, offshore renewable energy, ports, dredging, mining, cables and pipelines, marine science, engineering and technology, the maritime legal, financial and insurance communities, and others - as well as ocean stakeholders from the government, inter-governmental, academic and environment communities. On Wednesday, April 24th, USARC's John Farrell will be a speaker at "The Arctic Challenges and Opportunities for Responsible Industries."
House Backs Legislation to Update US Code on Park Service. Laws governing the National Park system would be reorganized and placed under a new title in U.S. code under legislation endorsed by the House on Tuesday. The measure (HR 1068) passed 409-0 under suspension of the rules, an expedited procedure that limits debate and requires a two-thirds majority for passage. Congressional Quarterly
Sea Otter Population More Than Doubles in SE. The sea otter population in Southeast has more than doubled over the last decade KFSK reports those are the findings of an estimate conducted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which is accepting 90 days of public comment on its revised stock assessment for the furry creature. Anchorage Daily News
Begich Renews Call for Arctic Ambassador. U.S. Sen. Mark Begich is renewing his call for a U.S. Arctic ambassador. The Alaska Democrat says he repeated the case for an Arctic ambassador last week to Secretary of State John Kerry during a hearing of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Foreign Operations. Anchorage Daily News
Senator Mark Begich's Press Release: here
Rural Energy Conference Will be in Anchorage. The eighth annual Rural Energy Conference will be held at the Sheraton Anchorage Hotel from April 29 to May 1. The conference is hosted by the University of Alaska Fairbanks' Alaska Center for Energy and Power and the Alaska Energy Authority. The conference will offer technical sessions about Alaska energy projects. The sessions will cover four general areas: the big picture in Alaska, diesel powerhouses, renewable technologies and energy efficiency. Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
Begich Chairs Oceans Hearing, Presses Coast Guard and NOAA to Understand Alaska Needs. Budget cuts that could cripple the Coast Guard's mission in a rapidly changing Arctic and management of Alaska's fisheries were the subject of a hearing today by the Senate Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, and the Coast Guard chaired by U.S. Sen. Mark Begich. Witnesses at the hearing included Admiral Robert J. Papp, Commandant of the Coast Guard, and the acting administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Kathy Sullivan. Senator Mark Begich
Earliest Satellite Maps of Antarctic and Arctic Sea-Ice. They were made using data from NASA's Nimbus-1 spacecraft, which was launched in 1964 to test new technologies for imaging weather systems from orbit. The satellite's old pictures have now been re-analyzed to determine the extent of the marine ice at the poles in the September of that year. BBC News
US, Others Wrangle Over Future Arctic Governance. Last week, the president of Iceland, Olafur Ragnar Grimsson, was in Washington to announce the launch of a new group called the Arctic Circle, which would include all counties and entities interested in greater involvement in Arctic-related decision-making. On Monday, the Centre for Strategic and International Studies, a Washington think tank, proposed a series of reforms to U.S. Arctic policy. Thomson Reuters Foundation
Human Rights for Cultural Survival-The Arctic Athabaskan Council Urges Canada to Reduce Emissions of Black Carbon. On April 23 2013 I had the honour and responsibility of submitting a petition to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights on behalf of the Arctic Athabaskan Council. Our petition asks the Commission to declare that Canada is contravening the human rights of Athabaskan peoples guaranteed in the 1948 American Declaration on the Rights and Duties of Man by inadequately regulating emissions of black carbon, or soot, a short-lived climate pollutant that accelerates warming and melting in northern Canada--our homelands. Arctic Athabaskan Council
Canada to Put More Business Into Arctic Council: Aglukkaq. Canada will roll out a plan to further incorporate business into the Arctic Council when it takes over chairmanship of the intergovernmental forum in May, Minister for the Arctic Council Leona Aglukkaq revealed in an interview with iPolitics. Aglukkaq, who is also the minister of Health and the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency, said she has been talking about increased industry involvement with the council for a year and a half. She said the council is "very open" to a forum that would focus on "Arctic state business practices" and bring key players to the table, such as shipping partners. iPolitics
No formal legislative action was taken on Arctic legislation Tuesday.
International Conference on Arctic Ocean Acidification, May 6-8, 2013, Bergen, Norway. The Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Program (AMAP), the Institute of Marine Research, the Norwegian Institute for Water Research, the Scientific Committee on Oceanic Research, and the University of British Columbia, Canada, host a conference to consider Arctic Ocean acidification. Topics will include response of Arctic Ocean to increasing CO2 and related changes in the global carbon cycle, social and policy challenges, Arctic Ocean acidification and ecological and biogeochemical coupling, implications of changing Arctic Ocean acidification for northern (commercial and subsistence) fisheries, and future developments.
Private Sector Transportation, Infrastructure, Assets, Response, Capacity, and Development in the Arctic, May 30, 2012, Seattle, WA. A recently-held Arctic transportation workshop in Iceland highlighted the need to better understand private sector transportation infrastructure and assets, recognizing industry's role in the responsible development of resources, response and supportive infrastructure. As a follow-up to its efforts to inventory and map Arctic transportation infrastructure, the Institute of the North is hosting a workshop at the Bell Harbor International Conference Center in Seattle, Washington that focuses on three critical areas: private sector assets and infrastructure in the Arctic, staging areas outside the Arctic that support Northern development, and vessels and technology that are difficult to map but need to be measured for future decision-making. Participants include industry representatives, technical experts, researchers, Coast Guard and other response personnel.
AGU Science Policy Conference, June 24-26, 2013. (Washington, DC) Hundreds of Earth and space scientists, students, policymakers, and industry professionals will discuss key Earth and space science topics that address challenges to our economy, national security, environment, and public safety. This meeting will focus on the science that helps inform policymakers' decisions related to energy, natural hazards, technology and infrastructure, climate, oceans, and the Arctic. The event is hosted by American Geophysical Union (AGU), a Washington, D. C.-based international nonprofit scientific association.
5th Symposium on the Impacts of an Ice-Diminishing Arctic on Naval and Maritime Operations, July 16-18, 2013 (Washington, D.C.). The U.S. National/Naval Ice Center (NIC) and the U.S. Arctic Research Commission (USARC) co-host this follow-on symposium to address the changing state of Arctic sea ice and associated environmental conditions vis-a-vis emerging or expected naval, maritime, and associated activities and operations in the region. Invited speakers include nationally and internationally recognized experts on Arctic observations, climate change, and maritime operations.
The Inaugural Meeting of The Arctic Circle, October 12-14, 2013 (Reykjavik, Iceland). The inaugural Arctic Circle will be held October 12-14, 2013. Subsequent Arctic Circle gatherings will be held in a different Arctic location each year, so that participants can become familiar with the challenges, needs and opportunities presented by these unique environments. The agenda for the first Arctic Circle gathering will include plenary sessions with international leaders on emerging topics of interest, such as: Sea ice melt and extreme weather; Security in the Arctic; Fisheries and ecosystem management; Shipping and transportation infrastructure; Arctic Resources; and Tourism.
Arctic Cities, Global Processes, and Local Realities, December 2-4, 2013 (Rovaniemi, Finland) The conference is organized jointly by the City of Rovaniemi and the Arctic Centre of the University of Lapland, Finland. The goal of the conference is to present the latest research scientific knowledge about the global processes as they become local realities. Even if the Conference is scientific in orientation, it aims to bridge science and knowledge into action by bringing top scholars to share their research results, and to organize joint discussion with the leaders of the Arctic Cities. Sessions include: Rovaniemi Process: past, present, future; Arctic responses to global environmental problems; people and extractive industries; tourism in the Arctic; the Arctic in global economy; climate change in the Arctic; indigenous peoples in cities; and, Arctic global flows. Cross cutting themes include: Arctic cities and global processes; management and governance in the Arctic; and, Arctic together with non-Arctic.