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Daily Sitka Sentinel Newspaper Archives Aug 31 2015, Page 1

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Daily Sitka Sentinel (Newspaper) - August 31, 2015, Sitka, Alaska75 cents volume 76 no. 167 Sitka Alaska monday August 31, 2015 6 pages 7 daily a h of s e own e d i n news t p a p e r s e k r v i n g s i t a k a s i n c e 1 9 4 s 0 we e w. S i t k a s n e n t i n e l. C of t / site i Rasenti n Nel Al 5 years 59 � / 47 � winds be 10 Mph Sentinel special Sitka forecast for september 1 Sitka invitational x country results Sentinel sports mostly sunny tuesday september 1 Silver Shadow 9 a. M. 4 p. M. Oconnell Bridge total passengers 382 Kerry climate change major threat to Alaska president Barack Obama accompanied by Alaska gov. Bill Walker Steps off air Force one after arriving at Elmendorf air Force base today in Anchorage. Obama opens a historic three Day trip to Alaska aimed at showing Solidarity with a state often overlooked by Washington while using its glorious but changing landscape As an urgent Call to action on climate change. A photo Andrew Harnik Obama arrives in Alaska climate topic this 2011 file photo shows mount Mckinley in Denali National Park. On sunday president Barack Obama said hers changing the name of the tallest Mountain in North America from mount Mckinley to Denali. The president arrived in the state this afternoon. A photo Becky Bohrer file what. Mckinley to be renamed Dena Ketchikan a officials have reduced the estimate for South East alaskans Pink Salmon Harvest by almost 30 million fish As the summer fishery wraps up its season. Mondays purse Seine opening will Likely be the last of the summer according to the Ketchikan daily news. Alaska department of fish and game Ketchikan area management biologist Scott Walker said Pink Salmon catches in Southeast Alaska Are just More than 28 million fish this year about half of what the state projected for 2015. We maybe will make 29 million Walker said and with All of the Gill net catch and what Little troll catch we Haveit will be somewhere around 30 million. District 4 open water and the West coast of Prince of Wales Island saw higher returns but inside Waters did not fare Well this season. Walker said the poor season will not Lead to any management decisions from fish and game but will Likely Lead to More cautious monitoring. It certainly raises questions and Well be watching it he said adding fish and game does not have any pre conceived plan to do something differ ent. Pink Salmon catch in be Falls Short Fairbanks a the trans Alaska Oil pipeline system was Worth far More Between 2007 and 2009 than Oil companies claimed according to the Alaska supreme court. The states highest court on Friday upheld a 2011 Superior court ruling that the pipeline was Worth $ 8.9 billion to $ 9.6 billion during that time reported the Fairbanks daily news Miner. By Josh Lederman and the lawsuit is one of several in an Mark Thiessen associated press Washington a the Obama administration will change the name of North americans tallest Moun Tain Peak from mount Mckinley to Denali the White House said sunday a major symbolic gesture to Alaska natives on the eve of president Barack of amass historic visit to Alaska. By renaming the Peak Denali an Athabasca word meaning the High one Obama waded into a sensitive and decades old conflict Between Resi dents of Alaska and Ohio. Alaskans have informally called the Mountain Denali for years but the Federal government recognizes its name invoking the 25th president William Mckinley who was born in Ohio and assassinated Early in his second term. With our own sense of reverence for this place we Are officially Renam ing the Mountain Denali in recognition of the traditions of Alaska natives and the Strong support of the people of Alaska said Interior Secretary Sally Jewell. Ohio politicians reacted angrily Al though it a snot immediately Clear if or How they could Stop it. Rep. Bob Gibbs r Ohio said Mckinley deserved to be honoured and invited his colleagues to join him to try to Block what he called of amass constitutional overreach. This political stunt is insulting to All ohioans and i will be working with the House committee on natural re sources to determine what can be done to prevent this action Gibbs said. The announcement came As Obama prepared to open a three Day visit to Alaska aimed at infusing fresh urgency into his Call to action on climate change. To the dismay of some Alaska republicans the White House has choreographed the trip to showcase melt ing glaciers and other cherished natural wonders in Alaska that Obama says Are threatened by warmer temperatures. But of amass visit is also geared to Ward displaying Solidarity with Alaska natives who face immense economic challenges and have warned of insufficient help from the Federal govern ment. As his first Stop after arriving in Anchorage on monday Obama planned to hold a listening session with Alaska natives. The president was also expected to announce new Steps to help Alaska native communities on wednesday when he becomes the first sitting president to visit the Alaska Arctic. At 20,320 feet the Mountain stands As the continents tallest and is still growing at a rate of about one Millie ter per year according to the National Park service. Known for its Majestic views the Mountain is dotted with Gla Ciers and covered at the top with Snow year round with powerful winds that make it difficult for the adventurous few who seek to climb it. Continued on Back Page by Josh Lederman associated press Anchorage a president Barack Obama brought the Power of the presidential pulpit to Alaska on monday aiming to thrust climate change to the forefront of the global Agenda with a historic visit that will put the states liquefying glaciers and sinking villages on graphic display. During his three Day tour of Alaska Obama planned to hike a Glacier con verse with fishermen and tape a reality to show with survivalist Bear Grylls All part of a highly orchestrated White House Campaign to illustrate How climate change has damaged the states stunning landscape. The goal at each Stop is to create powerful visuals that show real world effects of climate change and drive Home of amass Mes Sage that the crisis already has arrived. Stepping off of air Force one Obama was greeted by alaskans Lead ers and the u. S. Army alaskans com manding general. Small crowds Gath ered along the streets As Obama made his Way through downtown Anchorage where he planned to meet with Alaska natives before addressing a u. S. Sponsored Summit on climate change and the Arctic. Later in the trip Obama will be come the first sitting president to travel North of the Arctic Circle when he vis its Kotzebue population 3,153 to address the plight of Alaska natives who face dire economic conditions amid some of the worst effects of glob Al warming. They dont get a lot of presidents in Kotzebue Alaska gov. Bill Walker quipped As he joined Obama for the seven hour flight from Washington. Aboard air Force one the White House unveiled a new National Park service map bearing the name Denali where mount Mckinley used to be. As a prelude to the trip Obama announced his administration was renaming the tallest Mountain in North America and restoring its traditional Athabasca name. The move Drew applause from Walker and other Alaska leaders but harsh condemnations from Ohio politicians angry that Ohio native and for Mer president William Mckinley is name will be erased from the famed Peak. You just dont go and do something like that said Ohio gov. John Kasich a Republican presidential candidate. The White House said it planned to work with Ohio officials to find another Way to Honor Mckinley is legacy. As he traverses Alaska this week Obama has two audiences in mind alaskans who Are hungry for More Energy development to boost the states sagging Oil revenues and the broader Public whose focus Obama Hopes to concentrate on the need for drastic action to combat global warming including a climate treaty that Obama Hopes will help solidify his environmental legacy. Whether Obama can successfully navigate those two competing interests Energy and the environment is the prevailing question of his trip. The president has struggled to explain How his dire warnings and Call to action to Cut greenhouse gases Square with other Steps hers taken or allowed to expand Energy production including Oil and Gas. Environmental groups took particular offence at the administrations move to allow expanded Drill ing off alaskans Northwest coast just a few weeks before coming to Alaska to preach on climate change. White House press Secretary Josh Earnest told reporters travelling with the president that of amass All of the above approach to Energy Aims to facilitate the longer term transition to cleaner renewable fuels. Alaska is a place where that approach is on Dis play Earnest said. Even Alaska natives who have echoed of amass warnings about environmental changes have urged him to allow More Oil and Gas to be sucked out of alaskans soil and Waters. Alaska faces a roughly $ 3.5 billion deficit this year As a result of falling Oil prices forcing state budget cuts that have wreaked havoc on Rural services. History has shown us that the responsible Energy development which is the Lifeblood of our Economy can exist in tandem with and significantly enhance our traditional Way of life leaders of the Arctic slope regional corporation which represents inupiaq Eskimo shareholders wrote monday in a letter to Obama. Following his speech monday night Obama was to Board a u. S. Coast guard Cutter on tuesday to tour Kenai fjords National Park and to hike to exit Glacier a sprawling expanse of ice that is retreating amid warm ing temperatures. In Southwest Alaska on wednesday Obama will meet with fishermen locked in conflict with min ers Over plans to build a massive Gold and Copper mine in Bristol Bay Home to the worlds largest Salmon fishery. Gov says Sitka slide official state disaster by Dan Joling associated press Anchorage a scientists Are overwhelmingly unified in concluding that humans Are contributing to global climate change Secretary of state John Kerry said sunday night and the Public is slowly getting the full picture. Sceptics who stand in the Way of action to respond to climate change will not be remembered kindly he told Alaska reporters. I think the people who Are slow to come to this table will be written up by historians As having been some of the folks most irresponsible in understand ing and reacting to scientific analysis he said. Kerry spoke one Day before he and president Barack Obama will address the state departments conference on global leadership in the Arctic. The purpose according to the state department is to focus world attention on urgent issues facing the Arctic and provide foreign ministers and residents a Way to address challenges. The president believes this is one of the most important issues we face Kerry said. It is a National Security problem. War Mingus effects on Alaska have been More dramatic than elsewhere in the country As glaciers thaw coastlines erode and sea ice the habitat for threat ened Polar bears Pacific Walrus and ice seals diminishes. The president is taking Steps to address warming Kerry said and will advocate strongly for an International pact on cutting Carbon emissions at a United nations conference in Decem Ber in Paris. Kerry said he travelled to China to negotiate on Carbon reductions and the country has set targets. China is taking the Issue seriously he said. Weave been urging other countries All around the world to do so he said. The presidents climate action plan involves All Carbon sources from appliances to automobiles to Power generators. So were doing As much As we can to try to move people toward sustain Able sources of Energy and the presi Dent will talk about this very much while hers up Here in Alaska. Part of the reason for being Here is to under score this problem. Environmental groups plan to pro test monday Over of amass decision to Grant permits to Royal dutch Shell for exploratory drilling in the Chukchi sea off alaskans Northwest coast. Kerry said the administration is taking a balanced approach to moving away from Carbon sources of Energy. You have to balance it with the fundamentals of your Economy and of Basic needs. Thatus one of the things Well talk about Here How fast can we encourage people to switch. By Shannon Haugland and Tom Hesse Sentinel staff writer gov. Walker made it official Friday declaring site ass aug. 18 landslides an official state disaster. The declaration activates the states Public assistance individual assistance and temporary housing programs for those directly affected by the land slides and Aid to the City for the Cost of its response and recovery efforts the governors office said in fridays announcement. Heavy rainfall caused landslides that killed three men and damaged Pri vate and Public property including the Cit yes roads and water sewer and electrical utilities. Threats of further slides caused the City to evacuate Homes near the Kramer Avenue neighbourhood. City administrator Mark Gorman today said fridays announcement from the governors office was a tremendous Relief. We Are very very relieved and we very much appreciate the attention and concern on the part of the governor to get this through he said. This will go a Long Way in terms of offsetting expenses associated with the landslides. Its really a tremendous Relief from a financial Point of View. The governor issued this statement about his disaster declaration throughout this heartbreaking disaster the strength of site ass Community has prevailed. Emergency responders and volunteers have been court Oil companies undervalued system ongoing Battle Between pipeline own ers and the municipalities that tax the system including Fairbanks North Star Borough. Pipeline owners argued that the system was Worth Only about $ 1 Bil lion each year in 2007, 2008 and 2009. Municipalities said it was Worth about $ 14 billion each year. In a 30 Page decision the supreme court agreed with the lower court but did not tread much new ground. The value of the pipeline has been disputed each year since 2006. The lawsuits Are closely watched locally because the decision can have a Large Impact on the local property tax Pool. The Fairbanks North Star Borough won $ 8.6 million in the lawsuit Over the pipelines 2006 valuation. That Case was finalized by the supreme court in july 2014. The boroughs budget documents from earlier this year show that the Borough received $ 10.5 million in for taxes interest and penalties in the 2007 2009 lawsuit. The Borough was also awarded $ 892,000 for Legal fees. Continued on Back Page

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