KUCB KIAL Unalaska Community Broadcasting

Science & Environment

Science and environmental reporting on news and community topics. Science coverage is occasionally provided by community members.

Zoë Sobel/KUCB

 

The fishing industry in Unalaska is dominated by men. But behind the scenes, at the local branch of a public health and safety company, there’s a woman running the show.

Nicole Beier works for NSF International, a company responsible for quality testing fish at America’s top fishing port. And now she’s tasked with expanding their capacity.

Beier always knew she wanted to work in science, but never imagined she’d end up in Unalaska.

Courtesy NOAA Fisheries, NMFS EPA/MMPA Permit #: 18528 & IUCN # A/NW2013-2

 

In an effort to figure out what’s behind the mysterious decline of Steller sea lions, scientists are trying out crowdsourcing for the first time. The project is called Steller Watch. The idea is to convince the public to comb through pictures looking for sea lions.

Annie Feidt/Alaska Public

 

Rural Alaska runs on diesel. Although many communities are open to alternative energy ideas, they don’t have the funding to even explore them. But help could come in the form of graduate students from Harvard University, who have been tasked with the assignment of solving some of Alaska’s fossil fuel energy woes.

Harvard law student Mike Maruca may sound like he’s describing a spring break trip.

“We also got to drive out to Seward and went skiing at Alyeska,” Maruca said. “We managed to catch the northern lights last night, sort of. They were not very clear.”

T. Keith, U.S. Geological Survey

Bogoslof Volcano blew again Monday morning, marking its thirty-seventh explosion since the volcano roared back to life three months ago.

The short blast began around 3:30 a.m. and lasted just 12 minutes.

While the eruption produced an ash cloud, the Alaska Volcano Observatory has not predicted ash fall for Unalaska.

Scientists say this explosion appears to be over, and the AVO has left Bogoslof’s alert level at an intermediate “watch.” 

Laura Kraegel/KUCB

 

Late on a Friday afternoon Melissa Good sits on her front step filling out labels for a dog carrier. The crate is not for her dog. It holds a yearling ringed seal.

“He looks like he’d be nice and light and fluffy like a fluff ball, but not the case,” she said. “He’s heavier than he looks. He’s really dense! About two feet long about 30 pounds.”

 

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