Alaska is Having Its Hottest Year Since Records Began - "After a spring that was a full ten degrees hotter than normal, the northern state is on track for the most sweltering year on record." (via) [more inside]
In light of today's news that one of two Shell ships slated to drill exploratory oil wells in the Arctic waters of Alaska's Chukchi and Beaufort Seas had slipped its moorings and was headed towards Dutch Harbor, in Alaska's Aleutian Islands... check out a collaboration between the Yes Men and Greenpeace that's been online since June: arcticready.com (Twitter) -- an elaborate site spoofing Royal Dutch Shell Plc, who have uh... promised not to sue.
Dispatches from Polar Scientists -- A compilation of blogs "in celebration of the International Polar Year (2007-08), [giving] you an up-close-and-personal look at research in extreme environments through the thoughts and experiences of the scientists working there. We’ll post their photos, videos, and blogs on this site."
The Song of the Earth -- New Yorker music critic Alex Ross writes on composer John Luther Adams, who has created an installation work at the Museum of the North in Fairbanks, Alaska in which geologic, astronomical, and meteorologic data are converted, in real time, into "a shimmering synthesized carillon." For a tiny hint of the experience, you can watch this Youtube video Hear more about the work from Living on Earth.
Abandoned plane wrecks of the north. The Arctic North is a cruel environment for men and machine; for planes it is no different. The weather creates all sorts of hazards, the terrain offers its own variety of opportunities for disaster. (Warning: extreme comic sans.)
Melting into the ocean. In the Alaskan Arctic, villages like Shishmaref have a front row view of global warming.
The demise of the honey bucket. Many of us take running water and sewage services for granted. The Alaska Dept of Environmental Conservation is slowly converting rural Eskimo villages from a "fill and haul a bucket" sewage/water system to modern services. A fascinating look into the logistics required to bring these services into remote Artic villages.
Senate blocks attempt to open Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling. The vote was, it sounds, an attempt to end a democrat-led filibuster that has kept the proposed energy bill on the Senate floor for five weeks.