The Alaskan state legislature is to restructure the Ocean Rangers program, monitoring cruise ship traffic in the vulnerable waters of Alaska, in opposition with a recently-imposed veto by Alaskan Governor Mike Dunleavy, announced a month ago.
Alaska’s ferry system was shut down for a second straight day last week, due to a boat workers strike, who protest about stalled contract talks and big budget cuts imposed by the governor. Namely, about 420 members of the Inlandboatman’s Union of the Pacific walked off the job on July 24, after three years of labor negotiations with the state-run Alaska Marine Highway System hit a dead-end.
The US Coast Guard and Alaska State trooper boat crews rescued five fishermen when their vessel sunk near Black Island, on Sunday, July 14. The Daffnie commercial fishing vessel sunk in approximately 500-foot deep water with the possibility of 400 gallons of diesel fuel aboard.
The US Coast Guard Alaska issued a statement on a missing person after an explosion and subsequent fire at Delong Dock in Whittier, Alaska, according to which they suspend the search on the missing person. The Coast Guard reported that the fire allegedly occurred on a fixed barge and then spread to the pier and then to the fishing vessel.
Alaska’s Gov. Mike Dunleavy eliminated funding for on board cruise ship inspectors. The Ocean Rangers program was established by a ballot initiative and is paid by cruise ship passengers. As the Governor said, there are other mechanisms to ensure environmental conservation.
US Senator Dan Sullivan introduced the Spill Response and Prevention Surety Act, legislation to modify and permanently reauthorize the federal Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund. The move coincides with the 30th anniversary of the sinking of the tanker Exxon Valdez.
The US Coast Guard is searching for an overdue aircraft with three people aboard about 20 miles west of Kake, Alaska. Namely, a Guardian King Air 200 medical life flight was expected to land in Kake, however, the aircraft never landed. What is more, the USCG informed that it found debris from a plane in the water approximately 22 miles west of Kake.
The fishing vessel Nordic Viking that sank in Seward Harbor on December 9 caused oil spill in the area and the US Coast Guard is responsible for the clean-up procedures concerning fuel that was released. The factor remains unknown. The wildlife faces no hazards and further discharges haven’t been reported.
Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings (NCLH) will collaborate with Alaska Native-owned Huna Totem Corporation to build a second cruise pier in Icy Strait Point, Huna Totem’s world-class cruise ship destination in Hoonah, Alaska.
The northern Bering Sea and Bering Strait region has been an ecological, cultural, and economic center for Yup’ik, Cup’ik, St. Lawrence Island Yupik, and Inupiaq peoples for millennia. Yet, recently, a combination of factors, including less sea ice and more trade and resource development, has resulted to an increased vessel traffic in the region led by huge cargo vessels, tugs, and research vessels, and is expected to continue growing.
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