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Arctic Daily Update: June 27, 2016


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June 27, 2016  
Today's Congressional Action:  
The House and Senate are not in session.
Museum Director Calls for Increased Funding for Scientific Collections to Save Lives. As the director of the National Museum of Natural History, it isn't surprising that Kirk Johnson believes that people should make use of his museum's collections. What is surprising is the group of people whom Johnson is addressing: infectious disease researchers. In a recent op-ed for the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Johnson and his co-authors Diane DiEulis from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Stephen S. Morse from the School of Public Health at Columbia University and David Schindel, also from the Natural History Museum, wrote that researchers and public health officials need to start paying more attention to the vast collections resources available in research institutes and museums, as well as funding these highly valuable historic specimensSmithsonian Mag
Lab-, Field-Testing May Enable Hydrokinetic Technology to Bring Power to Alaskan Villages. Ever since researchers began field-testing in Alaska with small hydropower systems that generate electricity with a turbine submerged in a river, they've had to deal with such real-world setbacks as the generators getting hammered by logs carried along in the river's current. That's what happened to hydrokinetic generators soon after they were submerged into the Yukon River at Ruby in 2008 and Eagle in 2010. But Jeremy Kasper and other researchers with the Alaska Center for Energy and Power say lessons learned from those tests helped them develop a structure called a "debris diverter" to protect the generators. KUAC
permafrost New Website Tracks 'Unstable' Permafrost Conditions in Nunavut. The Government of Nunavut has launched a new online data bank to help communities across the territory track and adapt to changing permafrost conditions. "Some areas where the permafrost was frozen are becoming warmer," said Colleen Healey, the government's climate change program manager. CBC News
Rural Alaska Communities to Get $16 Million in Federal Energy Grants. The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Rural Development agency today announced more than $16 million in federal grants for energy projects in communities across Alaska. The federal High Energy Cost Grants fund projects in areas where households are paying at least 275 percent of the national average for their energy. Alaska Public Radio
Look Ahead: Where Will Inuit be in 2036? On June 21, Indigenous people across Canada celebrated the 20th anniversary of National Aboriginal Day. But how big will the population be on the holiday's 40th anniversary in 2036? Statistics Canada says Canadians can expect more of the population to identify as Indigenous, according to projections released June 21 to coincide with National Aboriginal Day. Nunatsiaq Online
Scientists Have Unlocked 1 Secret to Arctic Ground Squirrels' Deep-Freeze- and That Could Be a Big Deal for Humans. For up to nine months of the year, arctic ground squirrels are moribund. Their hearts beat only about three times a minute. Their body temperatures falls below freezing. They breathe, but only barely. Their metabolism practically stops. Every three weeks, for periods of about 15 hours, their bodily functions rouse a bit, but only to the level of sleeping, and then they fall back into their torpor. The cycle continues until late spring, when the squirrels emerge from hibernation and get busy on their summer mission of reproduction. Alaska Dispatch News
Recent Grounding of Fuel Tanker Off Alaska's Coast Highlights Need for Arctic Safety. Friday a Norwegian flagged chemical tanker, the Champion Ebony, ran aground on Nunivak Island, 135 miles west of Bethel in the Bering Sea. The ship was loaded with 14.2 million gallons of fuel products, but no polluting agents appear to have leaked from the tanker. The Alaska Arctic Policy Commission (AAPC) heard early and often that Alaskans living in Arctic coastal villages were concerned about the possibility of a hazardous spill in Arctic waters and about the lack of resources to adequately respond. Sit News 
Legislative Action 
No Arctic legislation was formally considered Friday.
Future Events
Arctic 2020: Building a Sustained Observing System June 28, 2016 (Fairbanks, Alaska, USA and webinar).With critical past, and potential future environmental changes affecting Alaska and the Arctic Region, the United States needs to rapidly expand long-term observing of the ice and marine environment across the greater Arctic Ocean Basin, as well as conditions across the state of Alaska. This will allow us to better monitor changes across the region, and support stakeholders with improving prediction capabilities for weather, marine ecosystems, sea-ice, and climate. This event is hosted by the Alaska Center for Climate Assessment and Policy.
Arctic Offshore Investment: Perspectives on the Development of Alaska's Outer Continental Shelf, June 29, 2016 (Washington, DC, USA). As the Department of Interior prepares to present its Proposed Final Five-Year Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing, of critical interest to the proposal's stakeholders are the opportunities and risks of developing Alaska's offshore resources. Hosted by Roll Call and in partnership with CQ, the policy briefing will bring together lawmakers from both sides of the conversation, native Alaskan communities, and other policy stakeholders to discuss the opportunities of and risks to the Arctic offshore. 
A Ten-Year Prioritzation of Infrastructure Needs in the US Arctic, June 30, 2016 (Webinar, 2- 4 pm EDT). The Committee on Marine Transportation System (CMTS) will be holding a webinar to discuss the development of recommendations regarding Federal public-private partnerships (P3s) to support critical US Arctic maritime infrastructure needs. This webinar will provide an opportunity to discuss the current elements of the CMTS report "A Ten-Year Prioritization of Infrastructure Needs in the US Arctic" and seek input from interested parties for the refinement of P3 finance examples and recommendations, including best practices for successful P3 engagement and any specific opportunities or ongoing projects that could inform the document recommendations.
For questions, please contact ArcticMTS@cmts.gov.
Web link: https://www.webmeeting.att.com. You will be directed to an online page, where you will be asked to insert the meeting number and participant code.
Meeting Number: 8773361839
Participant Code: 7705293
TOW Arctic Broadband Summit, July 13, 2016 (Barrow, Alaska, USA). The Arctic Economic Council, the Iñuit Arctic Business Alliance and the Arctic Slope Regional Corporation will host this event. Summit topics include the challenges of connectivity; the government's role in, and commitment to, broadband development; and, private investment opportunities.  Policy leaders, regulators, other government officials, along with industry experts and executives have been invited to present and attend.
A Collaboration with Rural Alaskans: The Driftwood Harvest in a Changing Climate, July 19, 2016 (Webinar). As part of the OneNOAA Science Seminar Series, ACCAP Climate Webinar will sponsor this event. The webinar will consider a study that examined flood events in the Yukon River with the goal of understanding how actual or perceived changes in driftwood availability are related to river hydrology and how future changes in hydrology may affect the driftwood harvest.
Conference on Water Innovations for Healthy Arctic Homes: September 18-21, 2016, Anchorage, Alaska. This circumpolar conference will bring together engineers, health experts, researchers, community members, policymakers, and innovators to discuss health benefits, challenges and innovations associated with making running water and sewer in remote northern communities safe, affordable and sustainable. Information and an expression of interest in attending can be found here. (The full link is: http://wihah2016.com/)
13th International Conference on Gas in Marine Sediments: September 19-22, 2016 (Tromso, Norway). GIMS 13 promotes the study of natural gas and release systems on a global scale and  facilitates interdisciplinary and international cooperation. The conference  intends to bring together geologists, biologists, microbiologist, geophysicists, oceanographers, geochemists and scientists from modeling disciplines. The forum will provide a platform for current knowledge and future programs in gas inventories, fluxes and their role within the carbon cycle and biodiversity. Conference is organized by CAGE - Centre for Arctic Gas Hydrate, Environment and Climate at UiT The Arctic University of Norway. Abstract submission deadline is May 30th and registration deadline is June 20th. For more information: http://gims13.uit.no
Bridging the Future of Arctic Social Science Research, September 23-24, 2016 (Monticello, Virginia, USA). The event is sponsored by Arctic Horizons.  The event will reassemble the members of the National Steering Committee and a small but diverse selection of representatives from the five regional workshops, to total about 15 people. The aim will be to identify and synthesize the core threads of the previous workshops and public contributions proffered between workshops. The target output for the workshop will be a final report draft and outline of steps leading to the final report release in June 2016. The Jefferson Institute will manage production of the publication.
Second International Conference on Natural Resources and Integrated Development of Coastal Areas in the Arctic Zone, September 27-29, 2016 (Arkhangelsk, Russia). The Conference is organized by FASO of Russia, Russian Academy of Sciences, Government of Arkhangelsk region, Arkhangelsk Scientific Center and International Arctic Science Committee (IASC). Conference is aimed at elaboration of research-based practical measures and instruments for realization of human, natural and transport-logistical potential of the Arctic zone, including development of the Northern Sea Route and implementation of models of integrated coastal areas management. For additional information, please email.
Arctic Ambitions V: International Business Conference & Trade Show, October 4-5, 2016 (Anchorage, Alaska, USA). This once-a-year event uniquely focuses on business and investment opportunities flowing from developments in the Arctic. With interest in commercial development in the Arctic growing rapidly, WTC Anchorage initiated the Arctic Ambitions conference five years ago to address issues such as innovation, investment, infrastructure development, transportation, natural resources, and trade. At the event, corporate executives and senior government officials from across the Arctic, and around the world, make presentations and participate in panel discussions. This year's conference also includes a Trade Show and B2B Matchmaking Session. For more information, please contact Greg Wolf (greg@wtcak.org) or call 907-278-7233.
Inuit traditions are a repository of Inuit culture and a primary expression of Inuit identity. The theme for the 2016 Inuit Studies Conference invites Elders, knowledge-bearers, researchers, artists, policy-makers, students and others to engage in conversations about the many ways in which traditions shape understanding, while registering social and cultural change. The institutional hosts of "Inuit Traditions," Memorial University of Newfoundland and the Nunatsiavut Government, invite you to contribute to an exchange of knowledge to be held in St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, October 7-10, 2016. Presentations on all aspects of Inuit studies will be welcome.
Arctic Technology Conference, October 24-26, 2016 (St. John's, Canada).  Founded in 1969, the Offshore Technology Conference (OTC) is the world's foremost event for the development of offshore resources in the fields of drilling, exploration, production and environmental protection. The Arctic Technology Conference (ATC) is built upon OTC's successful multidisciplinary approach, with 14 technical societies and organizations working together to deliver the world's most comprehensive Arctic event.
Converging Interests: Maritime & Arctic Security & Safety Conference (MASS16), October 27-28, 2016 (Newfoundland & Labrador, Canada). MASS16 will once again focus on the challenges associated with both northern and maritime environments. The aim of the Government of Canada and the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador supported international conference is to promote stakeholder collaboration, technological innovation, harsh environment research & development, and world-class education efforts that are contributing to various components of northern development. 
The 5th Forum for Arctic Modeling and Observational Synthesis (FAMOS) project School and Meeting, November 1-4, 2016 (Woods Hole, Massachusetts, USA).The major goals of the meeting are to discuss results of ongoing FAMOS activities, and to plan 2016-2017 coordinated modeling and observing projects, with a special focus on high and very high spatiotemporal resolution processes. You can register here.

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