Now that President Trump has announced the United States' withdrawal from the Paris climate accords, he should make good on his "America first" rhetoric by giving climate-change-impacted Alaska Native communities some of the money that would have otherwise gone to international climate fund—or so says a resolution passed by the state's largest Native organization at its annual convention.
An upcoming oil and gas lease sale will offer more territory in Alaska's National Petroleum Reserve than any other lease sale ever held for that huge federal land unit, the US Bureau of Land Management announced on Wednesday.
Climate Change: Information on Potential Economic Effects Could Help Guide Federal Efforts to Reduce Fiscal Exposure
Climate-related impacts, such as coastal property damage, have already cost the federal government billions of dollars, and these costs will likely rise in the future. We found that information on the economic effects of climate change is developing and imprecise, but it can convey insights into the nation's regions and sectors that could be most affected.
Millions of United States citizens continue to battle the effects of massive hurricanes this month. Many have lost electric and water service. As water and wastewater utilities struggle to get their systems up and running again, some are in a better position than others. What makes a utility more resilient in the face of this type of natural disaster?
83 percent of Puerto Ricans remain without power three weeks after Hurricane Maria hit the island. The goal is for 25 percent of customers to regain power by the end of October, but it could be months before the territory’s grid is fully operational again. Meanwhile, 36 percent of the island still does not have water service. Since energy is required to treat and deliver water, presumably the lack of power is standing in the way of getting some of those water systems back online. (Water, of course, is also needed to generate energy, but that’s a topic for another time.)
The US Senate just passed a budget resolution that brings oil drilling in Alaska’s Arctic refuge a little closer to reality
The U.S. Senate took a step Thursday toward opening Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling, approving a budget resolution that includes leasing in the site as a measure to raise federal revenue.
The resolution, a preliminary step toward potential approval of President Trump's proposed tax legislation, allows senators to avoid the need for 60 votes and the threat of a filibuster when the measure is considered in the future.
On the second day of this year’s annual AFN gathering in Anchorage, another significant announcement regarding the relationship between the state and tribes was put forward.
Delegates were told of a major new decision by the state Attorney General’s office, which seeks to resolve decades of legal battles by concluding that Alaska’s 229 tribes are fully sovereign entities. The move is a win for tribal and indigenous advocates who have long-contended they have equal jurisdiction and standing with the State of Alaska. The news came just one day after the governor signed an unprecedented compact with tribal entities that gives them potential control over child welfare policies.
Fall storms now regularly batter Alaska’s Arctic coastal villages — but don’t always qualify for disaster funds
A fall storm that sent waves crashing ashore in the northernmost U.S. community and caused at least $10 million in damage to roads, buildings and other facilities is part of a troublesome pattern in a new type of fall season along the coasts of northern and western Alaska. But current federal rules often mean such damage can't be covered by disaster funds.
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - Alaska’s top lawyer has released a legal opinion on the status of tribal sovereignty in the state.
State Attorney General Jahna Lindemuth addresses the opinion to Gov. Bill Walker, stating that tribes do exist in Alaska and their governments have inherent sovereignty.
The 16-page opinion outlines him tribal issues clarified over the years by the courts. It does not take positions on areas courts have not addressed.
For example, Lindemuth notes that tribes are legal entities separate from other governments. The state, however, initially held that legally, tribes did not exist. The federal government formally recognized Alaska tribes in 1994, a determination that was initially challenged by the state.
Currently, there are 229 federally recognized tribes in Alaska. There is just one reservation, the southeast Alaska community of Metlakatla.
My colleague Stacey Isaac Berahzer, a senior project director here at the Environmental Finance Center, made her podcast debut this week on The Water Values Podcast, a series specifically focused on drinking water finance and management. The Water Values is one of several podcast series that feature content on the drinking water sector.