Alaska gets silently baked in 2014 but the world does’t really hear about it.
Global Warming and Climate Change have most certainly arrived in Alaska, but the world won’t be hearing any loud alarms sounding because of Alaska’s ties to the fossil fuel industry. About the only thing the public hears on TV (especially in the lower 48) is the repetitive shouts of Sarah Palin saying “Drill baby Drill” and others downplaying Global Warming as a good thing for the USA’s most Northern state.
Typical “Global Warming is Good” statements abound such as: the extinction of polar bears is overblown because they have some in the Anchorage zoo—and once that pesky polar ice cap is gone there will be more efficient global shipping trade routes available.
As part of the latest budget issues the City of Anchorage has requested almost $2 million for the Anchorage Golf Course from the State Government.
Another reason for the climate change silence besides the ties to oil and gas revenue might be that the state of Alaska has voted (Red) pro Republican in every Presidental race since becoming a state in 1959.
For those still unconcerned about Global Warming & Climate Change here are few points worthy of note most are quotes from Rick Thoman, climate sciences and services manager for the Weather Service in Alaska.
This past Summer:
Seven Alaska communities have recorded their hottest annual average temperatures ever in 2014. Records for highest-average temperature recorded in a single year include: Cold Bay, King Salmon, Homer, Bethel, McGrath, Nome and Kotzebue.
During the 2014 Winter:
Anchorage, 2014 was the first recorded calendar year when the temperature failed to fall below zero.
Bethel, it was the first winter in recorded history where temperatures didn’t fall to 20 degrees below zero.
For the typical Alaskan even if their individual jobs are not directly working for the fossil fuel companies friends and family members most certainly are associated with Alaska’s oil and gas industry in some manner.
According to the state government of Alaksa:
“Alaska’s oil and gas industry impacts more than 45,000 workers with annual earnings of $2.65 billion. That’s mega.”
Alaska Labor & Workforce Oil & Gas Workers
Alaska Temperature is Changing Photo Gallery
I had a place in Anchorage Alaska, which I was able to buy cheap as part of a bank repo after the big bust—property values tanked after the boom of building the trans-Alaska oil pipeline. I kept that place for over ten years and still have many good friends there.
Back then I was less of a green guy, and so I must confess that I did apply for and received the often talked about Permanent Fund State oil revenues check from the state of Alaska. I did so once after my first year of living there that money which mostly sourced from oil royalties/investments are given to every man, woman and child residing in Alaska each year. After that I didn’t keep applying year after year (though I was fully entitled to receive the free money), so I can say that at least.
EV of the Year Judge, independent green journalist, photographer, author and sustainability activist that has published over 1000 articles. Mr Burridge’s travels have taken him to over 30 countries and 300+ major cities. He is originally from the USA, but has been residing in Australia for the last seven years. Connect to Ken Burridge on: Twitter, facebook, Google+, Linked in or website