A Wyoming Hotshot crew conducts night operations on the Pine Gulch fire in Colorado in August 2020. (Photo by Kyle Miller, Wyoming Hotshots/USFS)

Here’s how physically demanding wildland firefighting is

BY: - September 27, 2023

Radios crackle with chatter from a wildfire incident command post. Up the fireline, firefighters in yellow jerseys are swinging Pulaskis, axlike hand tools, to carve a fuel break into the land. By 10 a.m., these firefighters have already hiked 3 miles up steep, uneven terrain and built nearly 1,200 feet of fireline. It’s physically exhausting […]

A natural gas flare from an offshore oil drilling rig is seen in Cook Inlet in an undated photo. (Photo by Paul Souders/Getty Images)

Fossil fuel interests press their case with Alaska lawmakers

BY: and - September 26, 2023

As they’ve done for decades, fossil fuel interests and their allies are denigrating climate science and climate activists to protect and enhance their obscene profits at Alaskans’ expense. Curbing fossil fuel use and production, and stopping fossil fuel expansion, is critical to solving the climate crisis. A Sept. 8 United Nations report on the status […]

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Proposal would prevent physician assistants from providing appropriate care in rural Alaska

BY: - September 25, 2023

Two years ago, the Alaska Academy of Physician Assistants entered into discussions with the Alaska State Medical Board with the goal of updating Alaska’s regulations of physician assistants. Now, the ASMB is proposing regulations which would render it virtually impossible for PAs to practice in rural areas, and which could deprive many Alaskans of needed […]

The Interior boreal forest is seen on Sept. 20. 2022, from an overlook along the Parks Highway on the edge of Fairbanks. (Photo by Yereth Rosen/Alaska Beacon)

Gov. Dunleavy’s carbon math is bad

BY: - September 21, 2023

Gov. Mike Dunleavy persuaded Alaska’s Legislature to create a carbon offset program that monetizes the carbon dioxide that trees on state land breathe in and the carbon they store through photosynthesis. His 10-year budget plan relies heavily on filling gaps from dwindling oil revenues with carbon credit cash. Speaking with journalist Nathaniel Herz, he made […]

This view is of the Kuskokwim River and forests surrounding the river. (Photo by Jorge Moro/Getty Images)

Feds sue Alaska for managing its own river

BY: and - September 18, 2023

When someone else tries to take over your property, it’s up to you to legally defend your ownership rights. Imagine your neighbor comes over and starts determining who can park on your property, or worse, comes onto your property and bars a friend of yours from entering your house. That’s where we find ourselves today […]

A sign, seen on May 29, marks the eastern edge of the University of Alaska Anchorage campus. (Photo by Yereth Rosen/Alaska Beacon)

UAA offers affordable and convenient pathways that prepare students for the next step 

BY: - September 14, 2023

Through its community campuses and online program offerings, the University of Alaska Anchorage provides multiple entry points that meet learners where they are. UAA reaches far beyond the Municipality of Anchorage; we serve the communities of Southcentral Alaska through our campuses in Soldotna, Homer, Valdez, Kodiak, the Matanuska-Susitna Borough and Anchorage, as well as thousands […]

Jar for prescription drugs stuffed with hundred dollar bill representing high cost health care

Congress has a chance to reduce drug patent abuses, lower costs for Alaskans

BY: - September 12, 2023

Sen. Lisa Murkowski has long been a leader on issues concerning health care affordability and promoting more transparency in the health care system. As Congress plots out its next steps on health care reform, there is one glaring issue that deserves attention – Big Pharma’s abuse of the patent system – and there is a […]

The Alaska State Capitol on May 5, 2022 in Juneau, Alaska. (Photo by Lisa Phu/Alaska Beacon)

Alaskans shouldn’t cover personal legal costs of governor, attorney general and lieutenant governor

BY: and - September 9, 2023

It’s a tired game of deja vu: Gov. Mike Dunleavy and Attorney General Treg Taylor are again attempting to change regulations so that the state of Alaska has to cover legal costs for the governor, attorney general, and lieutenant governor if they are under investigation for dishonest and unethical misconduct. The public has until Sept. […]

Wind turbines spin near Delta Junction. (Alaska Energy Authority photo)

Gas incentives, Indigenous language election materials and a possible corporate shakeup in Yakutat

BY: - September 8, 2023

The termination dust has arrived, and we’re decidedly out of the summer news doldrums and into the busy fall season for stories. This week there are two energy-related items — one on a new federal study on renewable power in Alaska, and another on proposed tax breaks or other incentives to boost Anchorage-area natural gas […]

Invasive zebra mussels colonize a rock at Lewis and Clark Lake in Yankton, S.D. (Photo by Sam Stukel/USFWS/Flickr)

Invasive species cause billions of dollars in damage worldwide: 4 essential reads

BY: - September 6, 2023

Invasive species – including plants, animals and fish – cause heavy damage to crops, wildlife and human health worldwide. Some prey on native species; other out-compete them for space and food or spread disease. A new United Nations report estimates the losses generated by invasives at more than US$423 billion yearly and shows that these […]

A polar walks across an overwashed barrier island during a large Arctic storm in September of 2016. The barrier island is offshore of Barter Island on Alaska’s Beaufort Sea coast. Polar bears there typically rest on the barrier islands during the day and transit to the "bone pile" on Barter Island in the evenings to feast on whale carcass remnants supplied by local village whaling activities. (Photo by Cordell Johnson/U.S. Geological Survey)

How analyzing ancient and modern polar bear samples reveals the full scope of global warming

BY: - September 1, 2023

The global climate is changing and the Arctic is warming rapidly. These are objectively true statements that most people have come to accept. But it is also true that Earth’s climate has never been stagnant and climate anomalies have been frequent throughout the past. How then, do we understand our current situation relative to past […]