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News
Sep 03 2015
Alaska Fisheries Report PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 03 September 2015

12.82 MB | Download MP3 | Open in popup

 

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Coming up this week, our President is visited the home of sockeye – and of your host - this week; a water problem hampered coho processing in Unalakleet, and we meet another unsung cannery worker in Petersburg, all coming up on the Alaska Fisheries Report. We had help this week from KDLG's Dave Bendinger in Dillingham, KNOM's Emily Russell in Nome, KFSK's Joe Sykes in Petersburg and KSTK's Katarina Sostaric in Wrangell.  

 
Sep 03 2015
'Human-Caused' Wildfire Could Mean Many Things PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 03 September 2015
Jay Barrett/KMXT
The Alaska Dispatch News is reporting that the Twin Creeks Fire in Chiniak was “human-caused,” but the facts are more nuanced than that, according to a Alaska Division of Forestry spokesman.

The ADN quotes from a daily situation report that the cause of the fire was “ignited by humans,” but Jim Schwarber clarified to KMXT that “human-caused” does not imply intent. 

He said the classification can include anything that is human-made that ignites a fire, including an escaped vehicle fire. It would also include a downed powerline or an electrical transformer damaged in a high wind storm, much like the one last Thursday night when the fire started.

Schwarber said the cause of the Chiniak Fire is under active investigation, and the official release of the specific cause may not take place for awhile. 
 
Sep 03 2015
Twin Creeks Fire at 50 Percent Containment PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 03 September 2015
Kayla Desroches/KMXT

The Twin Creeks fire crews are making steady progress on containment. On Monday, firefighters had reached 10 percent containment, on Tuesday 20 percent, and on Wednesday 30 percent. Today, the fire is at 50 percent containment.

State Division of Forestry information officer, Jim Schwarber, says a containment line is a section of the fire boundary that the fire managers are confident is secure and that the fire will not escape. He says right now they’re “mopping up” behind the residences in Chiniak.  

“Where the edge of the fire stopped burning, the crews will walk in anywhere from 5 to 10 feet apart in a line and walk back and forth 300 feet deep into the fire burned area and feel actually with the back of their bare hands above the ground to sense any remaining heat from the fire.”

He says they’re making sure the remaining fuels don’t have a chance to reignite due to leftovers from that fire. He says they have three type II crews that are working towards each other to complete the containment.

“They were assigned different portions of the fire to continue extending the fire line that’s been constructed so far in regards to mopping up and securing the fire perimeter. The Yukon crew will be transported and will be driving actually through the fire on the road system to the far south side of the fire and start working that edge back towards the other two crews.”

Schwarber says they have about 93 firefighters not including additional assistance, but they did have one less crewmember starting Tuesday.

“There was a non-emergency transport of a firefighter who badly sprained his knee while on the fire line and was in pain, so we made arrangements to get him medical help and transported him to Kodiak for that. It was a minor injury, though it’s possible that he may not be returning to the fire line. It was a fairly severe sprain.”

Schwarber says it’s unclear how the firefighter hurt himself.

“The country out here is pretty rugged and footing is always important. That was our safety message for the morning brief was, be very careful out there, especially if it starts raining today. With fiber soles on firefighting boots, those do not give good traction on wet logs. So, we were encouraged ‘no walking on the top of logs, step over things.’”

Schwarber asks that people remain cautious of hazard trees in the Chiniak area. Fire can weaken roots and cause trees to fall over.   
 
Sep 03 2015
At September First Friday, Looking Toward Winter Months PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 03 September 2015
sept_4_art_walk.jpeg A poster for the September First Friday event. Click for larger version. Via the Kodiak Arts Council

Kayla Desroches/KMXT

Fall is almost here – and winter soon enough – which means indoor entertainment becomes all the more important. Erin Starr-Hollow is the program coordinator for the Kodiak Arts Council and has that in mind while planning upcoming First Friday art walks.

“I just think during those months where it’s really hard to get out - you know, sometimes the weather’s not great - it’s so important to have a little color and inspiration and just interest in the community, just to get out and have something to do where you can interact with all your friends and community members when it’s so easy to hibernate.”
    
Artist Natalie Natalie Trenery will provide one of the day’s attractions by giving children tools to create their own art.

“She’s going to be doing an interactive charcoal drawing activity with kids at the Baranov Museum, so that’s going to be a really fun, new activity that we’re trying. Several of the venues have expressed interest in doing more interactive exhibits with the community, so you can be looking for that in the future.”

You’ll also get to see some examples of fish made from marine debris. Artist Bonnie Dillard was one of those chosen to design lesson plans for ornaments that will decorate the capital Christmas tree this coming winter.

“She’s going to be showing the pieces that she has already collected and created at the auditorium foyer and, coming up next weekend, she’s going to be doing a community event at the Kodiak 75th celebration I believe, hoping to collect numerous pieces from the community to send to the capital Christmas tree.”

Starr-Hollow says the Alutiiq Museum will also debut its new book “Kal’unek from Karluk,” which focuses on an archaeological site near Karluk.

“This dig really allowed them to get a handle on what a rich, cultural heritage the Alutiiqs in that area had to kind of allow the community to feel like they had more to celebrate. It was a really powerful space, so they wrote a book about it, and they’re going to be doing readings and signings, and just celebrating that debut.”

Friday’s art walk will take place between 5 and 7 p.m. To find out more, check out kodiak arts council.org or call the Arts Council at 486-5291.
 
Sep 03 2015
President Obama Praises Kodiak's Energy Independence PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 03 September 2015
Jay Barrett/KMXT
Wednesday, when President Barack Obama visited Kotzebue on his three-day visit to Alaska to highlight global climate change, he praised another community for its efforts to switch almost exclusively to renewable energy:

“Kodiak Island, for example, recently achieved 99.7 percent of its electricity from renewable sources. Its wind power alone displaces more than two million gallons of diesel fuel a year. So people are saving money and helping the environment,” Mr. Obama said. “And today Kodiak Island announced a $3-million public-private partnership that will make the island the first in the world to adopt new technology that lets it stabilize and store the energy it generates from the wind.”

President Obama was referring to the flywheel energy storage project between KEA, the City of Kodiak and Matson at Pier 3. He made those comments during an address in Kotzebue Wednesday.
 
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